Indiana presents plan to help mentally ill kids

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Children with severe mental illnesses will be able to get state-funded services without their parents admitting neglect charges under a plan from Indiana's troubled Department of Child Services.
The agency said Monday the plan allows families, schools, judges, probation officers and others to contact community mental health centers to coordinate care for such children. DCS will roll out the program in the Lawrenceburg area, evaluate it after two months, then expand it statewide.
DCS has agreed to fund the services for children whose families are not eligible for Medicaid or whose private insurance won't cover the costs.
DCS says it expects the program to cost $11 million through next June 30 and will need the General Assembly to appropriate more money for the program to continue beyond then.
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