DOH NEWS RELEASE: NEWS RELEASE: CAMHD awarded $11.8 M grant to improve children’s mental health services

Posted on Jul 15, 2020 in Latest Department News

HONOLULU – The Hawai’i Department of Health’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Division (CAMHD) has been awarded a competitive $11.8 million system of care expansion grant funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The four-year grant will begin funding services in August 2020.

The grant will focus on enhancing services for approximately 2,400 youth (ages 3-21) with serious emotional disturbance per year statewide. “Now more than ever, it is important for us to work collaboratively with our child-serving partners to protect and improve children’s mental health,” said CAMHD Acting Administrator, Dr. Scott Shimabukuro. “We know that the COVID-19 pandemic and other societal stressors will have lasting impacts on the wellness of our children and families. These funds offer the opportunity to use cutting-edge strategies to address this growing crisis in our state.”

As the largest, Medicaid-serving, behavioral health care organization in Hawai‘i, CAMHD provides mental health services free of charge to eligible youth with severe emotional and/or behavioral challenges. Services include assessment, case management, and an array of therapeutic supports provided in the home and community, or temporary out-of-home placements.

The goals of the expansion grant, also described as the “Data to Wisdom” grant, are to reduce out-of-home mental health services by (a) improving youth outcomes through strengthening the state’s data-driven decision making infrastructure; (b) increasing coordination across child-serving agencies; (c) improving adherence to Child and Adolescent Service System Program principles; and (d) bolstering in-home treatments that strengthen families.

Several state agencies, academic and private partners have collaborated with CAMHD to make the grant possible and will assist in fulfilling the grant-funded activities during the next four years. These partners include: Hawai‘i Department of Human Services Social Services & Med-QUEST Divisions, Office of Youth Services, Family Court of the Judiciary, Hawai‘i Youth Services Network, EPIC Ohana, Inc., Child and Family Service, Kinai ‘Eha, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, Palo Alto Veterans Institute for Research, and PracticeWise, LLC.

For more information on CAMHD, visit and follow them on social media (Facebook and Instagram @camhdhawaii).

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Jennifer Irvine
Public Information Specialist
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Division
(808) 733-9346
[email protected]