Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services

Source material

The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) administers California’s Medicaid (Medi-Cal) program. The Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services (SMHS) program is “carved-out” of the broader Medi-Cal program and operates under the authority of a waiver approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) under Section 1915(b) of the Social Security Act. As the single state Medicaid agency, DHCS is responsible for administering the Medi-Cal SMHS Waiver Program which provides SMHS to Medi-Cal beneficiaries through County Mental Health Plans (MHPs). The MHPs are required to provide or arrange for the provision of SMHS to beneficiaries in their counties that meet medical necessity criteria, consistent with the beneficiaries’ mental health treatment needs and goals.

In order to get funding from DHCS, each county would need to have a Mental Health Plan.

This site has additional information including:

-The 1915(b) SMHS Waiver (approved thru June 30, 2020)

-Performance Dashboards (data) – there is a report dated March 22, 2018 titled “Performance Outcomes Adult Specialty Mental Health Services Report” that is broken down by county.

-Mental Health Plan Information – Quality Improvement Plans

-Contracts and State Plan – contracts with each county; various performance contracts;