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Children With Medical Handicaps ("CMH")

What is the CMH Program?
The Children With Medical Handicaps (CMH) Program is a health care program of the Ohio Department of Health that links families of children with special health care needs to a network of quality providers, and helps families obtain payment for many of the health services their child needs.



What kind of help can the CMH Program provide?
  • Diagnostic Program: Services for up to 6 months to rule-out or diagnose a special health care need or establish a treatment plan. May include lab tests, imaging, visits to CMH-approved doctors, therapy evaluations, up to 5 days hospitalization, and public health nurse services.
  • Treatment Program: Services for up to 1 year, renewable if eligible, for treatment of an eligible medical condition. Medical and financial eligibility criteria must be met. May include lab tests, imaging, physician visits, surgeries and hospitalizations, prescription medications, medical equipment/supplies, therapies, service coordination, and public health nurse services.
  • Service Coordination Program: Helps families locate and coordinate services for their child. Limited to children with specific conditions who are seen by a team of providers at approved facilities. (Conditions include Cystic Fibrosis, Spinal Bifida, Cleft Liip/Palate, and Hemophilia.)


What is the role of your Local Health Department and Public Health Nurses? Public health nurses, who work for your local health department, are your local point of contact to help you with the CMH program. Your public health nurse can help you:
  • Start an application for one or more of the CMH programs
  • Assist you with your application paperwork and financial application
  • Help you find CMH-approved specialists and other providers
  • Help with coordination of health care and services for your child
  • Help to link you with other resources and agencies that may be able to help you and your child
  • Facilitate annual renewal of treatment and service coordination programs
  • Help you understand your child’s treatment plan
  • Help you understand your medical bills and assist with billing problems
  • Most of all – We get to know you and your child, so we can be available to help you with your child’s needs.


What are the eligibility requirements for the CMH Program?
  • Age: newborn – 21 years
  • Permanent resident of Ohio
  • Under the care of a CMH-approved doctor (M.D. or D.O.)
  • Have an eligible chronic medical condition. (Examples include Cancer, AIDS, Diabetes, Epilepsy, Cystic Fibrosis, Scoliosis, Hemophilia, Hearing Loss, Juvenile Arthritis, Severe Vision Disorders, Spinal Bifida, Cerebral Palsy, Cleft Lip/Palate, Congenital Heart Disease, Chronic Lung Disease including Asthma, and many other chronic conditions)
  • Diagnostic and Service Coordination program: No financial eligibility requirement
  • Treatment program: Child must either be Medicaid-eligible, or parent must submit a financial application to demonstrate financial eligibility. (Even if your child is not eligible for Medicaid, he/she may still be eligible for CMH. The guidelines are different.)


How can I apply for the CMH Program for my child?
  • Call the Scioto County Health Department at 740-355-8358 and ask for a public health nurse. We can help you start the application process.
  • Your child’s CMH-approved physician must submit a Medical Application Form to start the process. You will need to complete part of this form and sign it. We can help you fill out your part of the application form, and then we can send it to your child’s physician to complete.
  • If your child already sees a CMH-approved physician, you can ask your child’s provider to start a CMH application. (You will still need to sign the medical application form.)


For more information or to start an application, call (740) 355-8358 and ask to speak to a public health nurse. We are happy to help you!


Related links:

The Ohio Department of Health’s website – Children With Medical Handicaps Program page

Brochure – Children With Medical Handicaps Program, Ohio Department of Health

CMH Program Family Handbook

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