Evaluating Behavioral Health Services in Minnesota's Medicaid Population Using the Experience of Care and Health Outcomes (ECHO™) Survey


Performance data on Medicaid managed behavioral health care are for the most part unavailable. The purpose of the current study is to provide a benchmark of Medicaid enrollees' evaluations of access to, and quality of, behavioral health services and to examine the factors that influence these ratings. Eight hundred eighty-five Minnesota Medicaid managed care enrollees who received behavioral health services in 2000 completed the Experience of Care and Health Outcomes Survey, a multi-dimensional satisfaction survey that included measures of access to services, communication with clinicians, functional improvement, and the effect of treatment. Between 29 and 59 percent of the respondents gave the highest possible ratings to the behavioral health services they received. Access to services and functional improvements were rated less favorably than communication with clinicians and the effects of treatment. Ratings within certain domains varied by age, race, education, and region.