Gov Affairs 2019 Priorities Preview GOVT-160148057-2019-01-Gov Affairs 2019 Priorities - Page 2

2019 POLICY AND ADVOCACY PRIORITIES CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL COLORADO Healthier Kids Through Public Policy Here at Children’s Hospital Colorado, advocacy is a core part of our mission. That means speaking up for patients and families, kids in our community and kids across the country to ensure each of them has the opportunity to grow up healthy and strong. We know the public policy decisions made by our cities, states and federal government can dramatically shape the health of children, for better or for worse. For example, in 2018, Children’s Colorado worked with advocacy partners to pass House Bill 1094, a reauthorization of the successful, 20-year-old Children and Youth Mental Health Treatment Act. BEFORE AFTER the passage of House Bill 1094 the passage of House Bill 1094 Here’s a look at how passing this bill has the ability to change the trajectory of a child’s life: Caleb has a severe mental health condition characterized by: More Colorado children have access to timely residential or community-based treatment, thanks to doubled funding for the Children and Youth Mental Health Treatment program Caleb’s parents must choose between either: • Profound depression and anxiety • Physical aggression • An intellectual disability that co-occurs with his mental health conditions When Caleb becomes a threat to himself and others, his parents take him to Children’s Colorado’s Emergency Department. He’s admitted for an inpatient stay in the Pediatric Mental Health Institute at Children’s Colorado. Caleb is ready for discharge from Children’s Colorado to a residential facility or to continue mental health treatment in his community. Surrender custody of Caleb so that he can access services through Medicaid’s coverage for foster children Continue trying to manage his severe mental health needs on their own, even if professionals advise it’s unsafe Caleb’s family would be split up at a time when they are in critical need of support Caleb may continue to be a threat to himself or his family and the entire process is likely to repeat if Caleb is readmitted to the Emergency Department These results are neither compassionate nor cost effective. The program helps ensure families stay together Following treatment, 87% of children avoid transition into the child welfare or juvenile justice systems after treatment $ Cost savings for the state and county governments The improved mental health system helps enable a more hopeful future for each child served. But before he is released from the hospital, Caleb’s parents realize their private insurance only covers limited residential mental health services. They can’t afford to pay for residential services on their own. 2 3