News from the Hilltop Institute at UMBC

New Report Examines Ways to Strengthen
Maryland's School-Based Health Centers

Maryland's 62 school-based health centers are an important safety net provider for school children of all ages. The centers, located in 10 jurisdictions across the state, provide access to preventive services, acute care, mental health services, and oral health care for more than 50,000 students in affiliated schools. However, these centers report insufficient financing not only to support current operations but also to expand in order to meet the growing demand for their services. Regulatory restrictions under managed care, coupled with inadequate fiscal management systems, severely limit reimbursement from Medicaid and other third party payers.

In a new report prepared for the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission, the Hilltop Institute presents a financial portrait of Maryland's school-based health centers, identifies barriers to reimbursement, and makes policy recommendations to expand access to school-based health centers, further develop the infrastructure and stabilize the financing of centers, and promote increased reimbursement. Report findings served as the basis for a Call for Proposals issued by the Commission in December 2007.

For more information, contact study leader Cynthia Woodcock at 410.455.6273 or cwoodcock@hilltop.umbc.edu.

The Hilltop Institute at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County is Maryland's premier research center for health policy. Hilltop is dedicated to improving the health and social outcomes of vulnerable populations through research, analysis, and evaluations on behalf of government agencies, foundations, and other organizations.
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