Human Services holds community meetings to seek input on expanding behavioral health services


The North Dakota Department of Human Services will host a series of community meetings to gather input on the development and implementation of a new Medicaid 1915(i) state plan amendment to expand home and community-based behavioral health services for children and adults. 

During the 2019 legislative session, North Dakota lawmakers authorized the department to create a Medicaid 1915(i) state plan amendment, which will allow North Dakota Medicaid to pay for additional home and community-based services to support individuals with mental health conditions, substance use disorders and/or brain injuries.

For adults these services could include, but are not limited to, supports for housing, employment, education, transitions out of homelessness or institutional living and peer support. Potential services for children may include respite care, educational support and transition to adulthood supports.

“As the department continues efforts to address behavioral health needs in the state, it is important that we hear from individuals and family members who need these services and supports,” said Pamela Sagness, Behavioral Health Division director. “Additionally, it is important for community providers interested in providing these services to provide feedback.”

“This is an exciting opportunity for North Dakota Medicaid to be innovative and to continue making a difference in lives of people we serve,” said Caprice Knapp, director of the department’s Medical Services Division. “This state plan amendment will allow us to pay for services that are typically not covered by Medicaid.”

The meetings will focus on gathering input from interested stakeholders.

Public Meeting Schedule

Sept. 23, 2019, 1:30 to 3 p.m. and 6 to 7:30 p.m.

  • Bismarck: Bismarck Public Library, 515 N. Fifth St., Conference Room B

Sept. 24, 2019, 1 to 2:30 p.m. and 2:30 to 4 p.m.

  • Fargo: Fargo Main Public Library, 102 Third St. N., Community Room

Sept. 25, 2019, Noon to 1:30 p.m. and 2 to 3:30 p.m.

  • Grand Forks: Grand Forks Public Library, 2110 Library Circle, Conference Room

Sept. 26, 2019, Noon to 1:30 p.m. and 6 to 7:30 p.m.

  • Minot: Minot Public Library, 516 Second Ave. S.W., North Meeting Room

Oct. 1, 2019, 1 to 2:30 p.m. Mountain Time 

  • Dickinson, West River Community Center, 2004 Fairway St., Dickinson, Meeting Room 1

People with disabilities who need accommodations to participate in a meeting should contact Bianca Bell in the department’s Behavioral Health Division at 701-328-8958, toll-free 800-755-2719, 711 (TTY) or bhbellatnd [dot] gov


Written comments can also be submitted at the meetings or online at Online comments will be accepted until Oct. 17 at 5 p.m. Central Time.

After the community input meetings, the department will begin to write the Medicaid 1915(i) state plan amendment and submit it to the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for approval. The anticipated implementation date is July 1, 2020. To be considered eligible for services, individuals must qualify for Medicaid or Medicaid Expansion. Other needs-based eligibility criteria will also be considered by the department when developing the services.

For more information about the Medicaid 1915(i) state plan amendment, visit