OFFICE OF FISCAL ANALYSIS

Legislative Office Building, Room 5200

Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 240-0200

http://www.cga.ct.gov/ofa

sSB-972

AN ACT CONCERNING THE MENTAL, EMOTIONAL AND BEHAVIORAL HEALTH OF YOUTHS.


OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact:

Agency Affected

Fund-Effect

FY 14 $

FY 15 $

Children & Families, Dept.

GF - Cost

Potential Significant

Potential Significant

Legislative Mgmt.

GF - Cost

less than 1,000

less than 1,000

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

The bill results in a significant cost in both FY 14 and FY 15 to the Department of Children and Families (DCF) to implement a Youth Mental Health Care System that, among other requirements, (1) strengthens families through home visitation, (2) increases awareness of mental, emotional or behavioral health issues within elementary and secondary schools by providing access to a regional child psychiatry consultation network, (3) trains elementary and secondary school employees on the warning signs of mental, emotional or behavioral health warning signs and (4) provides public and private reimbursement for various mental, emotional or behavioral health services. It is estimated that there are 804,328 persons in Connecticut age 18 or younger. Of this number, it is unknown how many individuals might be interpreted as “youth” and how many of these youths might require Youth Mental Health Care System services. There also may be a cost of less than $1,000 to agencies participating in a Nutrition, Genetics and Psychotropic Drugs task force to reimburse legislators and agency staff for mileage expenses.

In FY 13, DCF contracts for home visitation services average $3,611 per client. It is unknown how many youths would require these services and how many of these might be served by approximately $9 million in funding in FY 14 – FY 16 under the Federal Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visitation grant.

Increasing awareness of mental, emotional or behavioral health issues within elementary and secondary schools by providing access to a regional child psychiatry consultation network is estimated to cost approximately $1.8 million annually. This is based on contract costs associated with providing a child psychiatrist, a social worker and a care coordinator for each of three regions covering approximately 270,000 children each (a total cost of $1.5 million) and a part-time child psychiatrist providing medical direction of the program, a part-time program manager overseeing the regions, a part-time data analyst to track consultations and trainings and indirect costs. It is anticipated that the regional staff would train elementary and secondary school employees on the warning signs of mental, emotional or behavioral health warning signs.

It is unknown what the cost would be for DCF's Youth Mental Health Care System to provide public and private reimbursement for various mental, emotional or behavioral health services but it is anticipated for public (i.e. DCF) reimbursement expenses to be significant.

The Out Years

Youth Mental Health Care System costs would continue into the future subject to the programs developed and implemented by DCF , the number of youth/families that would be provided services and/or training and the amount of public reimbursement that will be needed for applicable various mental, emotional or behavioral health services. There is no ongoing fiscal impact associated with the task force as it terminates in FY 15.