CHA News Article

GAO Reports More Than Half of Medicaid High-Utilizers Have Mental Health Conditions

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) reports that 5 percent of Medicaid-only enrollees – those not eligible for Medicare and with the highest Medicaid utilization – accounted for nearly half of Medicaid spending from 2009-11. The report, Medicaid: A Small Share of Enrollees Consistently Accounted for a Large Share of Expenditures, also concludes that “enrollees with mental health conditions also constituted about half of the high-expenditure group.” According to the GAO, less than 15 percent of all Medicaid-only enrollees had mental health conditions. Additionally, the report found that, of the high-utilization group, 71 percent of enrollees with a substance abuse condition also had one or more mental health conditions.