Expansion Covers Nearly 500K for Mental Health, Addiction

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Nearly 500,000 low-income Ohioans have received mental health and addiction services under the state’s Medicaid expansion since the program began in 2014.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the expansion has brought more than 950,000 people onto the rolls and more than half were treated for mental health and addiction issues. About 100,000 of the new beneficiaries were diagnosed with severe mental illnesses, including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Officials say almost all of the newly enrolled clients with mental health or addiction issues had been uninsured prior to the expansion.

Greg Moody is director of Gov. John Kasich’s Office of Health Transformation. Moody says the expansion is part of a redesign of the state’s behavioral health system designed to sustain services.