Policy, System Design and Financing

Our work in this area focuses on federal, state and local policies and reform initiatives impacting the delivery of services for children, youth and young adults with behavioral health challenges and their families. It addresses the organization and financing of delivery systems in Medicaid, child welfare, juvenile justice and behavioral health.

Topics of importance we address under Policy, System Design and Financing include: 

  • Medicaid: Customizing Medicaid re-design and health reforms for children, youth and young adults with behavioral health challenges and those in child welfare.
  • Mental Health Block Grant: Leveraging  the set aside for early onset mental health disorders
  • Substance Use Prevention and Treatment Block Grant: Promoting policies and financing for prevention and treatment of adolescent substance use disorders
  • Title IV-E Child Welfare Waivers: Coordination with Medicaid reforms
  • Grant Administration: Managing specific requirements of federal grants
  • Purchasing Models: Implementing value-based purchasing arrangements and use of case rates
  • Financing and Utilization Analysis: Analyzing child behavioral health service use and expense across child-serving systems
  • Cost Benefit Analyses: Designing and implementing cost-benefit analyses related to home and community based services and evidence-based practices
  • Return on Investment (ROI): Measuring ROI related to the provision of home and community based care and intensive care coordination using fidelity Wraparound
  • Sustainability: Designing and implementing cross-agency financing strategies to sustain children’s behavioral health reforms
  • Governance: Directed at decision making and oversight structures involving day-to-day operations; as well as system of care governance  System, Community and Population Considerations: Identification of populations of focus using prevalence and utilization data, qualitative data, state and community priorities and other factors

Our Technical Assistance Strategies

We offer technical assistance (TA) customized to meet the unique needs of system of care communities, states and stakeholders.

We use multiple platforms for our TA, including:

  • Small group expert meetings – for example, bringing together trade associations and State purchasers.
  • Academies, which focus on concentrated learning on topics such as Medicaid managed care and financing, mental health, and substance use disorder services at state and local levels.
  • Resources such as tools and briefs, including a series on Financing Tools for Systems of Care.
  • Monthly Minutes, which are animated, short educational videos on topics such as distinguishing medical homes from health homes
  • Learning communities (LC), which bring together groups from across the country for focused study on a particular topic (A Medicaid managed care LC is planned).
  • Provision of technical assistance to individual states, communities and others on topics including customizing Medicaid managed care for children in child welfare.