An official website of the United States Government -

Access to Mental Health Services for Adults Covered by Medicaid

Chapter 2 focuses on the needs of adults with mental health conditions and the role of Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) in supporting crisis services. Medicaid beneficiaries with mental illness often have unmet needs and difficulty getting access to appropriate services. Access to treatment for Medicaid beneficiaries is affected by a variety of factors, including state coverage decisions. Beneficiaries may also have difficulty finding mental health providers who accept new patients. Medicaid’s role in supporting crisis services is critical, yet largely undefined. States have little guidance to implement crisis services in accordance with federal guidelines.

The Commission recommends that the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (the Secretary) direct relevant agencies to issue guidance that addresses how Medicaid and CHIP can be used to fund a crisis continuum for beneficiaries experiencing behavioral health crises. The second recommendation calls on the Secretary to direct a coordinated effort to provide education, technical assistance, and planning support to expand access to such services.

From: June 2021 Report to Congress on Medicaid and CHIP