Legislative Alert: Colorado Modernizing Behavioral Health Terminology

December 13, 2018

Back in March, Colorado passed SB 091. The bill, introduced in January by Senator Beth Humenik and Representative Daniel Thurlow, was a follow up and clean up to SB 242 in 2017.

The purpose of SB 091 is to modernize the terminology used in the Colorado Revised Statutes relating to behavioral health. The state acknowledged that the terminology they were using was outdated, and needed to be updated to reflect modern concerns surrounding substance use disorder and behavioral health.

Some of the terminology that was updated / added / expanded upon include the following terms:

  • alcohol use disorder
  • substance use disorder
  • health-status-related factor
  • impaired practice
  • peer health assistance organization
  • mental health disorder
  • private treatment program
  • Chronically and habitually uses alcoholic beverages to the extent that the applicant's normal faculties are impaired
  • disability
  • health care services

Using updated and consistent terminology in the behavioral health field is a vital part of BHAP's advocacy efforts.


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