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Webinar Schedule

The public is welcome to participate in the following online webinars to learn more about the waiver application and ask questions about the project.

  • Public Comment Process Update and FAQ’s
    Thurs., Dec. 21- 2:00 pm
    Please join the webinar by following THIS LINK.
    The telephone conference number will be provided when you sign in.
  • Introductory Webinar
    Weds., Dec. 6 -2:00 pm
    View slides from the presentation HERE.
  • _____________________

Public Meetings

The public is also welcome to attend the following public meetings to review the information found in the Section 1115 Demonstration Waiver, ask questions about the program scope and provide public testimony:

  • Juneau
    Friday, December 8
    Time: 4:30 pm
    Alaska Office Building (350 Main St.)
    Conference Room 115
    Teleconference#: 1-800-315-6338
    Passcode: 58920#
  • Fairbanks
    Monday, December 11
    Time: 6:00 pm
    Noel Wien Library (1215 Cowles St.)
    Teleconference#: 1-800-315-6338
    Passcode: 58920#
  • Kenai
    Tuesday, December 12
    Time: 6:00 pm
    Kenai Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center (11471 Kenai Spur Hwy.)
    Teleconference#: 1-800-315-6338
    Passcode: 58920#
  • Mat-Su
    Wednesday, December 13
    Time: 6:00 pm
    Wasilla Senior Center (1301 S. Century Circle)
    Teleconference#: 1-800-315-6338
    Passcode: 58920#
  • Anchorage
    Thursday, December 14
    Time: 6:00 pm
    Frontier Building (3601 C. St.)
    Conference Room 880/890
    Teleconference#: 1-800-315-6338
    Passcode: 58920#

1115 Behavioral Health Medicaid Waiver 

The State of Alaska’s Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) is seeking public comments on an Section 1115 Behavioral Health Demonstration Waiver authority to support the comprehensive reform of Alaska’s Medicaid supported behavioral health system.

      Public Comment Period Opens:   November 28, 2017
      Public Comment Period Closes:   December 29, 2017 at 5:00 pm AST

      1115 Behavioral Health Demonstration Application (draft) HERE

      Public Notice HERE
      Update FAQ’s (Coming Soon)

Program Summary

The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) is submitting a Section 1115 Behavioral Health Demonstration Waiver application to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to develop a data-driven, integrated behavioral health system of care for children, youth, and adults with serious mental illness, severe emotional disturbance, and/or substance use disorders. The demonstration project also seeks to increase services for at-risk families in order to support the healthy development of children and adults through increased outreach and prevention and early intervention supports.

Goals and Objectives

The Alaska Behavioral Health 1115 Demonstration seeks to provide Alaskans with a comprehensive suite of cost-effective, high quality behavioral health services designed to ensure access to the right services at the right time in the right setting. The goals and objectives of the application are:

    Goal 1: Rebalance the current behavioral health system of care to reduce Alaska’s over-reliance on acute, institutional care and shift to more community- or regional-based care

    • Decrease use of inpatient hospital and emergency department care episodes.
    • Decrease use of residential out-of-home placements.
    • Increase regionally-based capacity for a continuum of intensive outpatient, day treatment, intensive case management, community and recovery support, home-based family, assertive community treatment, and ambulatory withdrawal management services.
    • Develop community-based, culturally appropriate behavioral health workforce capacity (i.e., implement additional Medicaid-reimbursed behavioral health provider types) to address existing workforce deficits.

    Goal 2: Intervene as early as possible in the lives of Alaskans to address behavioral health symptoms before symptoms cascade into functional impairments:

    • Provide universal screening to identify symptoms.
    • Provide brief, solution-focused interventions to prevent acute care.
    • Provide care as close as possible to the homes or regional-hub communities of Alaskans.

    Goal 3: Improve the overall behavioral health system accountability by reforming the existing system of care:

    • Contract with an Administrative Services Organization (ASO) to manage Alaska’s existing system of behavioral health care.
    • Improve the consistency of screening, assessment, and service/placement decisions through use of evidence-based and evidence-informed tools.
    • Standardize and streamline documentation requirements to reduce duplication of effort and facilitate coordination of care across all providers.
    • Support provider development of infrastructures necessary to coordinate care, report and achieve performance/quality measures, report per capita BH costs, and improve participant outcomes.

Public Comment Process

    To submit public comments on the 1115 Waiver, please send them via email to or mail them to:

        1115 Public Comments
        C/O Alaska Mental Health Board/ Advisory Board on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse
        PO Box 110608
        Juneau, AK 99811-0608
PLEASE NOTE: If you wish to provide comment and you experience a disability and need special accommodation in order to participate in this process, please contact Beverly Schoonover at 907-465-5114 to ensure that any necessary accommodations can be provided.