Office of Health Transformation Update
May 8, 2017
New Behavioral Health Benefits Start July 1

This week behavioral health providers will begin testing system changes that will add important new behavioral health benefits starting July 1, 2017. As a result of these changes, individuals with the most severe illnesses will have access to a wider array of services, including assertive community treatment (ACT) for adults, family counseling, and intensive home-based treatment (IHBT) for youth at risk of out of home placement. During consideration of the rules to implement these changes, some providers raised concerns about the system’s capacity to make the necessary changes. However, based on recommendations from the Common Sense Initiative and National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI Ohio) to proceed, a multi-year process of intensive stakeholder engagement, and significant policy changes that were made to accommodate provider concerns, Ohio Medicaid filed rules on April 14 to activate the new benefits as planned on July 1. Also on July 1, Ohio Medicaid will begin paying for inpatient stays in freestanding psychiatric hospitals through managed care, a change that will significantly expand private inpatient provider capacity and reduce stress on emergency services.  

NAMI Ohio recommendation to not delay
Activities to assure provider readiness
Common Sense Initiative review
Provider testing underway
Payment update for psychiatric hospitals

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