Individuals with serious mental illness who often have poor health outcomes, high care coordination needs, and high costs are commonly targeted by states for enrollment into Medicaid health homes that were made possible under section 2703 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Within this population, children with serious emotional disturbance (SED) are a compelling high-cost, high-need group that can potentially benefit from the integrated care provided under health homes. While states cannot develop health home models that target by age, states can tailor behavioral health-focused health homes to meet the unique needs of both children and adults.

This brief, developed by CHCS for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Health Home Information Resource Center, highlights health home opportunities for children with SED and presents considerations to help states develop models that address this population’s unique needs. Additional support for the brief was provided by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).