Specialized Foster Care Plan

New: Specialized Foster Care Plan to Launch July 1, 2023

The Department recently published the policy paper "North Carolina's Specialized Foster Care Plan," requesting input from those who support these populations and other interested stakeholders. After review of recommendations, the Department is moving the Specialized Foster Care Plan launch to July 1, 2023. This revised date will allow time for additional design and input on key features of the Foster Care Plan for children and youth currently and formerly involved in the child welfare system.

Interim Plan to be Developed

To ensure these children and youth are not required to make multiple transitions as North Carolina moves to managed care, the Department will seek input from key stakeholders on an interim plan that will:

  • Ensure children receive a full range of physical and behavioral health services
  • Leverage the existing NC Medicaid Direct primary care and LME-MCO behavioral health system while directly addressing challenges and mitigating problems children in foster care face today
  • Ensure children in foster care receive increased coordination of care
  • Include legislative changes necessary to support the 2023 launch of the Foster Care Plan and a local management entity structure that enables children's access to behavioral services outside of the Behavioral Health/IDD Tailored Plan

New Foster Care Plan Workgroup: Opportunity to Join

The Department is establishing a Foster Care Plan Workgroup that will support the development of an interim and long-term plan for children in foster care. If you or a group is interested in being a member, please send an email to Medicaid.NCEngagement@dhhs.nc.gov.

More Stakeholder Engagement to Come

In the coming weeks, the Department will:

  • Share details of the Foster Care Plan request for proposal not described in the policy paper
  • Consult with stakeholders on the policy paper feedback
  • Identify opportunities to align Foster Care Plan requirements with the Family First Prevention Services Act
  • Explore potential changes to reach children earlier and offer services to children in foster care and their families

About the Foster Care Plan

The Foster Care Plan will be a statewide specialty Medicaid managed care plan to ensure access to comprehensive physical and behavioral health services while maintaining treatment plans when placements change. The Foster Care Plan will include care management services to improve coordination among service providers, families, involved entities (such as the Department of Social Services, Division of Juvenile Justice, schools) and other stakeholders involved in serving Foster Care Plan members. 

Webinar: An Overview of North Carolina's Specialized Foster Care Plan -- Feb. 11, 2021