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Fact Sheet: Bureau for Children with Medical Handicaps

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Hamilton County Public Health and the Bureau for Children with Medical Handicaps are here to serve you!



Comprehensive care


What is BCMH?

The Bureau for Children with Medical Handicaps (BCMH) is a program operated by the Ohio Department of Health.  It reaches out to children with special health care needs throughout Ohio.

Hamilton County Public Health’s Nursing Division helps provide BCMH
services for Hamilton County residents.

BCMH can help cover unpaid medical bills or excessive medical costs due to services not covered by a primary health insurance plan.

Persons with private insurance could still be eligible for BCMH.

Who Qualifies?

Children from Ohio, under the age of 21 with special medical needs or chronic medical conditions* may be eligible for BCMH services:

  • Children born with medical conditions such as birth defects, cerebral palsy, spina bifida and cystic
  • Children who develop chronic medical conditions after birth such as cancer, diabetes, epilepsy and chronic ear
  • Children in all income levels qualify to receive some BCMH
  • Medical and financial eligibility is determined by BCMH on a case-by-case basis.

*Children with developmental conditions such as autism are not covered by BCMH.


Hamilton County Public Health………..513-946-7882




What Services are Available?

BCMH offers the following features:

Diagnostic offers free assessment, diagnosis and evaluation of a child who may have a chronic medical condition. Public health nurses help families locate BCMH-approved healthcare providers.

Treatment provides payment for ongoing services related to a chronic medical condition. Children must receive care from a BCMH-approved provider. Assistance may include medical equipment/supplies, prescription medications, occupational therapy, physical therapy and more.

Service Coordination gives families an opportunity to sit down with BCMH. Service Coordinators and put together short and long-term plans for treatment and support.  Service Coordinators can also acquaint families with the resources available through BCMH.

Public Health Nurses from Hamilton County Public Health assist BCMH in providing services to Hamilton County residents.  The nurses can act as liaisons to physicians and other healthcare providers. Nurses also help families complete BCMH paperwork, including applications and renewals.

“No one in my family has a child with special healthcare needs, but BCMH was there to support me and my child.” -BCMH mom

“It does not have to break you financially to have a child with special healthcare needs.” -BCMH mom


Download a printable version of this fact sheet here.


250 William Howard Taft Road
2nd Floor, Cincinnati, OH 45219
Phone 513.946.7800 Fax 513.946.7890