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Early Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment

The Title V Maternal and Child Health Services (MCH) Block Grant program and the Medicaid program are required under federal law to coordinate activities, using coordination agreements and partnerships between state Medicaid agencies and Title V MCH program grantees to improve access to services for children and pregnant women. (Section 505 [42 U.S.C. 705] (a)(5)(F)) This website describes the law and opportunities states are using to coordinate Title V and Medicaid. In particular, coordination with the Medicaid Early Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit is required.

The EPSDT benefit provides comprehensive health coverage for all children under age 21 enrolled in Medicaid. Created in 1967 and required in every state, EPSDT finances various appropriate and necessary pediatric services. This benefit requirement includes children enrolled in a state’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) through Medicaid Expansion CHIP, but not those in separate, private CHIP health plans.

Since Medicaid covers one-third of children age 1–6, and more than 40% of school-age children and adolescentsone, EPSDT offers a way to ensure that children birth to age 21 receive appropriate physical, dental, developmental, and mental health services—from prevention to treatment.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services produced EPSDT – A guide for states: Coverage in the Medicaid Benefit for Children and Adolescents (PDF - 613 KB) to describe states' roles and responsibilities.