OM: 70% Of FQHCs Provide Mental Health Services

70% Of FQHCs Provide Mental Health Services Open Minds August 13, 2012

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The National Association of Community Health Centers' (NACHC) 2010 Assessment of Behavioral Health Services found that among Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), about 70% provide mental health services, 55% provide substance abuse services, and 65% provide some form of integrated care services. In 2010, there were 1,100 FQHCs, operating at 8,000 sites, and serving about 20 million patients. Of the 20 million patients served in 2010, about 4% (852,984) used mental health services and 0.5% (98,760) used substance abuse services.

Number of Patients & Visits For Primary Behavioral Health Diagnoses At FQHCs In 2010

Patients (in thousands)

Visits (in thousands)

Average Visits Per Patients





Other Substance Abuse Related








Depression & Other Mood Disorders








ADD & Disruptive Behavior




Other Mental Health Issues




These are the results of a new study released by Truven Health Analytics, which describes the financing and delivery of behavioral health services through the FQHC system. The report describes the variety of different sources from which FQHCs receive funding, including:

* Federal grants - Grants authorized under Section 330 of the Public Health Services Act can be used to fund FQHC services * Medicaid - States can pay FQHCs using a prospective payment system (PPS) or an alternative payment method greater or equal to the PPS rate. Behavioral health services are covered when provided by physicians, physician assistants, licensed clinical psychologists, and licensed clinical social workers practicing within their scope of services are covered. * Children's Health Insurance Plan (CHIP) - Policies are similar to Medicaid; however CHIP policies vary depending upon whether the program is a Medicaid expansion, stand-alone or combination program. For services delivered to patients enrolled in managed care plans * Medicare - Under Medicare Part B, FQHCs receive an all-inclusive payment for each covered visit, regardless of the specific services provided, that includes a range of primary care services and services accompanying or occurring as a result of primary care services, including clinical psychologist and clinical social worker services. * Medicare Managed Care ¬- Medicare Part C pay FQHCs on either a capitated or fee-for-service basis, with covered services and billable providers varying by plan. * Private Insurance - Arrangements vary by private health plan. FQHCs are not always included in the provider networks established by the carve-out entities; therefore, behavioral health services provided to enrollees may not be reimbursable. * Patient Self-Payments - Health centers determine patient charges on the basis of patients' ability to pay using a sliding-fee scale

A link to the full text of "Financing of Behavioral Health Services within Federally Qualified Health Centers" may be found in The OPEN MINDS Circle Library at

For more information, contact: Brad Stone, Media Services Team, Office of Communications, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration, 1 Choke Cherry Road, Rockville, Maryland 20857; 240-276-2130; Fax: 240-276-2135; E-mail: Bradford.Stone at; Web site: <> ; or Truven Health Analytics, 4301 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 330, Washington, District of Columbia 20008; 202-719-7982; Web site: <> .

70% Of FQHCs Provide Mental Health Services. (2012, August 13). OPEN MINDS Weekly News Wire.

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