Maryland Department of HealthJuly 3, 2024

Media Contact:
Chase Cook, Director, Office of Communications, 410-767-8649

Maryland Department of Health announces partnership to develop children's behavioral health roadmap

Baltimore, MD – The Maryland Department of Health today announced its partnership with the Maryland Coalition of Families and Manatt Health to develop recommendations and a public-facing roadmap that offers a vision for change for the state’s public behavioral health system. The partnership will establish the next steps to improve behavioral health for Maryland’s children, youth, and families. 

“We are making vital improvements — including investments in crisis services for youth, and new school-based initiatives, in partnership with sister agencies,” said Maryland Health Secretary Dr. Laura Herrera Scott. “We also know that significant gaps remain and that not all children and youth are getting care when they need it.” 

The Department, Maryland Coalition of Families and Manatt Health, from now until December 2024, will:

  • Conduct a current state assessment.
  • Develop an internal report and initial set of recommendations.
  • Prepare a detailed roadmap with proposed policy changes and action steps to improve behavioral health care for children and youth. 
“This roadmap will touch the full continuum of care for our youth and their families — everything from prevention and early intervention to high-intensity services," said Deputy Secretary for Behavioral Health Alyssa Lord. “Our partners will also outline the concrete implementation steps needed to turn high-level policy recommendations into reality.”

The Maryland Coalition of Families is the state’s leading organization that helps families and youth navigate the behavioral health system. It is in all 24 jurisdictions and has worked with the Department on coordinating family peer support services and more. 

Manatt Health is a leading national policy and strategy firm. They recently completed a national roadmap on strategies for addressing the behavioral health crisis among children and youth with complex conditions.

To learn about the Department's behavioral health resources and services for children, visit health.maryland.gov/youthbehavioralhealth


The Maryland Department of Health is dedicated to protecting and improving the health and safety of all Marylanders through disease prevention, access to care, quality management, and community engagement. 

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