Children with Medical Handicaps (BCMH)

bcmh3BCMH, or the Children with Medical Handicaps program, links families of children with special health care needs to a network of quality providers and helps families obtain payment for services their child needs. This health care program is offered by the health department through the Ohio Department of Health.

Special health care needs may be caused by a condition a child is born with or develops later. Some eligible conditions for the program include congenital heart disease, scoliosis, spina bifida, and cerebral palsy.

To be eligible, your child must be:

  • Age 0-21
  • Permanent resident of Ohio
  • Children who are at risk for, may have or have a chronic medical condition
  • Under the care of a BCMH-approved physician


BCMH includes the following services:

    • Public Health Nurse (PHN) Services: These services are provided by a registered nurse employed by the health department who is skilled in working with families who have a child with a special health care need.  This service provides information about available community resources, helps families locate a BCMH provider, assists families with understanding their child’s medical plan of treatment, and makes referrals to doctors, pharmacies, durable medical equipment providers and other services.


    • Diagnostic Program: For six months, children can receive services from BCMH-approved providers, to rule out or diagnose a special health care need or establish a plan of treatment. There is no financial eligibility requirement for diagnostic services.


    • Treatment Program: Children can receive services for one year, from BCMH-approved providers, for treatment of an eligible condition. Both medical and financial eligibility are required for the treatment program. If the child remains eligible, services may be renewed each year until the child reaches age 21.


    • Service Coordination for Specific Medical Conditions: This program helps families locate and coordinate services for their child. This is a limited program available to children with specific conditions, who are seen by a team of providers at hospitals approved by BCMH for service coordination.


  • Public Health Nurse Service Coordination: This service is available to children 0 to 3 with medical needs who are enrolled in the Help Me Grow program.


To enroll in the program, the child’s BCMH-approved doctor sends a Medical Application Form to BCMH office. Find a BCMH provider for your child here or contact us.

For more information: