Mental Health Block Grant (MHBG)

Block grants are funds the federal government gives to states for providing services. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has given us a block grant for mental health. It means we can help more people — even if you’re not a Mercy Care member.

What’s covered and who benefits 

The MHBG funds are spent on providers that help people in the community who need covered services, like: 

  • Mental health review
  • Counseling
  • Case management
  • Skills training

Those who can take part are uninsured: 

  • People experiencing a first episode of psychosis (FEP)
  • Adults with serious mental illness (SMI)
  • Children with serious emotional disturbance (SED)

First episode psychosis (FEP)

What is FEP?
FEP refers to someone experiencing psychosis for the first time. It can differ from person to person. Some common symptoms are: 

  • Thoughts or beliefs that are unusual or bizarre 
  • Hearing or seeing things that others don’t hear or see 
  • Feeling of someone watching you  
  • Changes in personality 
  • Sleeping problems 
  • Isolation from others 

If you or someone you know is having some or all these symptoms, you’ll want to get help right away. 

Studies show that early treatment can help slow down or stop the symptoms of psychosis. It can also improve recovery. Some services are: 

  • Counseling 
  • Support for jobs and education 
  • Medicine 
  • Support for families

Providers for FEP

Valleywise First Episode Clinic 
480-341-7073 (after hours)  
950 E. Van Buren St. 
Avondale, AZ 85323 
Who can take part: Ages 15 to 25 years with first episode of psychosis in the past year 

Resilient Health 
1415 N. 1st St. 
Phoenix, AZ 85004 
Who can take part: Ages 15 to 30 years with first episode of psychosis in the past two years 



Mercy Care funds community providers to serve children with serious emotional disturbance (SED) in outpatient or residential settings.

An SED is a designation for individuals from birth through 17 years who have a diagnosable behavioral, mental or emotional condition. This condition interferes with or limits a child’s role or functioning in family, school or community activities.  

If you’re interested in these services, contact your nearest SED provider or Mercy Care member services for more information. Mercy Care RBHA Member Services is available at 602-586-1841 or 1-800-564-5465 (TTY/TDD 711). Representatives are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Behavioral Health Home providers 

Residential and specialty providers

  • Christian Family Care
  • Florence Crittenton Services
  • Mingus Mountain
  • New Hope of AZ
  • Youth Development Institute


What is SMI? 

An SMI is a chronic (long-term) mental health condition. It affects or limits one or more daily activities:   

  • Eating, dressing and hygiene  
  • Taking prescribed medicine  
  • Getting around in the community  
  • Taking part in family, school or a job 

What is an SMI designation? 

This is a term to describe SMI. The person is 18 years or older and: 

  • Can’t live independently without good support  
  • Is at risk of serious harm to themselves or others 
  • Can’t function well  
  • Is at risk for decline or getting worse without good support and services 

Providers for SMI

People are assigned to a behavioral health home after SMI designation.

Outpatient providers in Maricopa county include: 

Outpatient providers in Pinal county include: 

Residential treatment providers include:

*Providers who take part in assertive community treatment (ACT). This is a higher level of care that provides comprehensive local treatment to people with SMI. 

Mercy Care has posters, brochures and pocket guides to let people know about behavioral health services that eligible children, youth and adults can get at no cost. These services are paid for by federal grants. You can view these materials and order copies at no cost to you. Share them with your clients and their families. Place them in your clinics, offices and centers. To order, just fill of the order form below and email it to

View and order materials

Additional guidance

AHCCCS Medical Policy Manual (AMPM)

Non-Title Enrollment Reference Guide: Learn how to establish Non-Title enrollment for members

Crisis/State Only Membership Reference Guide: Learn how to establish enrollment for crisis and/or state-only services for a titled member