REPORT: State Examples for Optimizing Medicaid – March 2024

In March 2024, Children First published a policy brief entitled “Optimizing Medicaid to Improve Child and Youth Mental Health in Pennsylvania.” In that brief, five specific reforms to optimize Medicaid as a sustainable funding source to improve child and adolescent health in Pennsylvania were outlined.

To accompany the original brief, this compilation of examples of innovations other states are making that bolster the support of these recommendations. Several states have made great advancements to improve child and adolescent mental health by using creative solutions within the confines of the federal Medicaid program. These state examples demonstrate the potential for Pennsylvania’s system and support the five essential mental health reforms outlined in the next column.