Data & Backgrounders

Data & Backgrounders

California Children & Youth Services Dashboard and Interactive Map
State and County Data, FY17-18 to FY 20-21


California Children’s Trust has compiled a detailed summary of Specialty Mental Health Services (SMHS) and Non-Specialty Mental Health Services (NSMHS) by every county delivered to various child and youth populations across the state, and for the first time made the data accessible to all through an interactive map as well as county-by-county dashboards.

Since we last released this report, covering the years 2013 – 2017, California has seen large increases in Medi-Cal enrollment (partly due to the COVID-19 emergency,) but unfortunately we continue to lag in meeting the mental health needs of children and youth, especially those in foster care. Since the last report we have also seen a significant increase in the number of children who accessed mental health services from their managed care plan (NSMHS).

Key Facts

  • Medi-Cal enrollment is up by 30% due to both state and federal policy.
  • Non-Specialty Mental Health Services grew significantly over the same period.
  • Children’s utilization and acuity have risen sharply across the state.
  • Correspondingly, non-federal based revenues have increased.
  • However, for children in foster care, penetration and access rates are flat or declining.

In addition to providing an updated snapshot, our new dashboards and map contain additional findings that (in the dashboard) break out data for foster care populations, and (in the interactive map) include both SMHS data along with managed care plan / NSMHS data.

As our wraparound issue briefs make clear, California has made an admirable commitment to youth mental health, but needs to take action on the numerous financial and administrative roadblocks to deliver the kind of support that all young people need.

We hope this data spotlights system shortfalls that are harming some of California’s most vulnerable children and youth, and further equips state and local agencies, community partners, and advocates to close the service gaps and to build more just and equitable systems of care.