Identifying Opportunities To Improve Children's Behavioral Health Care: An Analysis of Medicaid Utilization and Expenditures.
Faces of Medicaid Data Brief.
Pires, Sheila. Grimes, Katherine. Gilmer, Todd. Allen, Kamala. Mahadevan, Roopa. Hendricks, Taylor.
Center for Health Care Strategies.
Human Service Collaborative.
Children with behavioral health needs served by Medicaid require an array of services to support their health and well-being, but the current system often does not meet their needs, resulting in missed opportunities to improve outcomes. To better understand the patterns of service use and costs for these children, the Center for Health Care Strategies analyzed behavioral health care use and expense for children in Medicaid in all 50 states. This brief highlights key findings from the analysis, revealing that: (1) Children using behavioral health care represented under 10 percent of the overall Medicaid child population, but an estimated 38 percent of total spending for children in Medicaid; (2) Children in foster care and those on SSI/disability together represented one-third of the Medicaid child population using behavioral health care, but 56 percent of total behavioral health service costs; and (3) Almost 50 percent of children in Medicaid who were prescribed psychotropic medications received no identifiable accompanying behavioral health treatment. (Author abstract)
Medicaid; foster care; foster children; mental health services; use studies; statistics; expenditures