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Health 2023

Every child and family deserves access to affordable, quality physical and behavioral health care.

Quality and consistent preventive health care, beginning even before birth, gives children the best chance to grow up to be healthy and productive adults.

Children and families must be able to access and maintain affordable health insurance, and policies should maximize availability and robust investment in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Our health care systems and policies should prioritize preventive services including immunization, developmental screenings, early intervention, and home visiting. Policies should promote timely and equitable access to a complete range of health care services within a healthy home and community-based environments for children and families across the lifespan.


24,345 babies were born in 2022.1

Births by Race & Ethnicity (2022)1

  • White, non-Hispanic (66.0%)
  • American Indian (1.1%)
  • Asian/Pacific Islander (3.5%)
  • Black/African American (6.5%)
  • White, Hispanic (17.6%)
  • Multiracial (5.3%)

Trimester Prenatal Care Began (2022)1

  • First Trimester (78.9%)
  • Second Trimester (14.8%)
  • Third Trimester (3.4%)
  • None (1.0%)
  • Unknown (1.9%)

1. United States Department of Health and Human Services (US DHHS), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), Division of Vital Statistics (DVS), Natality on CDC WONDER Online Database, for years 2016-2022

Pre/post-natal health

Tobacco Use (2022)1

  • Did not use tobacco during most recent pregnancy (94.9%)
  • Used tobacco during most recent pregnancy (5.1%)

Low Birth Weight (2022)1

  • Not Low Birth Weight (2500+g) (92.1%)
  • Moderately Low Birth Weight (1500-2499 g) (6.6%)
  • Very Low Birth Weight (<1500 g) (1.2%)

12.0% of new mothers experienced postpartum depression symptoms related to their most recent pregnancy.2

3.3% of women had a home visitor during pregnancy to help prepare for the new baby.2

1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. National Vital Statistics System, Natality on CDC WONDER Online Database.

2. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

Teen births & sexual behavior

Teen Births

Teen births are at the lowest point in over a decade. In 2022 there were 900 babies born to teen mothers, 236 to mothers who were 10-17 years old, 664 to mothers who were 18 or 19.¹

Teen births by age (2022)1

  • Ages 18-19 (73.8%)
  • Ages 16-17 (21.6%)
  • Ages 14-15 (2.8%)
Source: Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).


In 2022, there were less than five children ages 0-11 and 19 children ages 12-19 living with HIV.


1. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

2. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 2021.

Infant & child deaths

Infant mortality

Infant mortality was 5.8 births per 1,000 births in 2022.

Pregnancy deaths

8 women died in 2022 due to a cause related to or aggravated by pregnancy or its management.¹

Child Deaths, Ages 1-19 (2011-2022)1

Source: Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

Health Insurance

Health coverage for Nebraska’s children, ages 18 & under (2022)1

  • Any (94.8%)
  • Public Insurance (26.9%)
  • Employer-Based Insurance (57.1%)
  • Direct-Purchase Insurance (6.2%)
  • None (5.2%)
  • More Than One Type (6.7%)

Access to health care

182,000 children were Enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP in SFY 2022.2

52.8% of those eligible for Medicaid/CHIP are children, but children only make up 19.6% of Medicaid costs.2

Medicaid/CHIP Eligibility by Category (SFY 2022)2*

  • Blind/Disabled (10.4%)
  • Aged (5.7%)
  • Adults (31.1%)
  • Children (52.8%)

Medicaid/Chip expenditures by Category (SFY 2022)2*

  • Blind/Disabled
  • Aged
  • Adults
  • Children

CHIP/Medicaid enrollment (SFY 2022)3

  • Medicaid (89.2%)
  • CHIP (10.8%)

1. U.S. Census Bureau, 2022 American Community Survey 5-year estimates, Table B27010.
2. Nebraska Medicaid Annual Report for State Fiscal Year 2022.
3. State Medicaid and CHIP Applications, Eligibility Determinations, and Enrollment Data.
* “Children” category combines Medicaid and CHIP coverage. “Adults” are those aged 19-64 receiving Aid to Dependent Children,
or temporary cash assistance through the state of Nebraska.

Behavioral Health

An estimated 20.2% Nebraska children have been diagnosed with a mental/behavioral condition needing treatment.1

Many children in Nebraska deal with behavioral health problems that may affect their ability to participate in normal childhood activities. The National Survey of Children’s Health estimates the number of Nebraska children facing the following disorders:¹

• Anxiety: 32,490
• ADD/ADHD: 30,143
• Depression: 16,692
• Autism Spectrum Disorder: 7,252

47.6% of children needing mental health counseling actually received it.2

Regional centers (2022)3

22 Youths

received services at Hastings Regional Center, a chemical dependency program for youth from the Youth Rehabilitation & Treatment Center (YRTC) in Kearney.

47 youths

received services from Lincoln Regional Center at the Whitehall Campus.

83.9% of children six months to five years met all four measures of flourishing.¹

• Bounces back quickly when things don’t go their way
• Are affectionate and tender with their parent(s)
• Show interest and curiosity in learning new things
• Smile and laugh a lot

1. 2020-21 National Survey of Children’s Health.

2. 2022 National Survey of Children’s Health.

3. Department of Health and Human Services.

4. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 2021.


30,090 children received behavioral health services through Medicaid/CHIP from 1,246 providers (FY 2022).3

221 children received developmental services through Medicaid/CHIP (FY 2022).3

36.4% of teens felt sad or hopeless (everyday for 2+ weeks so that activity was stopped in last 12 months).²

Health Risks

54.6% of high schoolers rarely or never wore a seat belt.1

Blood Lead Level Testing (SFY 2022)2

Exposure to lead may harm a child’s brain and central nervous system. Even low blood lead concentrations can
cause irreversible damage such as:

• impaired physical and cognitive development,
• delayed development,
• behavioral problems,
• hearing loss, and
• malnutrition.

In SFY 2022: 35,281 children had a blood lead level test.

595 had elevated
blood lead levels,
representing 1.7% of
all children tested.

1. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 2021.
2. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.

Health Risks

Domestic violence & sexual assault2

Nebraska’s Network of Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault Programs includes 20 community-based programs. There are also four tribal programs which comprise the Nebraska Tribal Coalition Ending Family Violence.

2. Nebraska Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence.

Health Risks

Adverse Childhood Experiences

Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are potentially traumatic events that can have negative, lasting effects on health and well-being. Experiencing multiple ACEs results in compounding effects, and there is growing evidence that it is the general experience of multiple ACEs, rather than the specific individual impact of any one experience that matters. The experience of ACEs extends beyond the child and can cause consequences for the whole family and community.

Number Of ACEs Children Experience (2021)

  • 0 ACE (65.1%
  • 1 ACE (18.4%)
  • 2+ ACEs (16.6%)

Health Services

Health professional shortage areas are designations that indicate a shortage of health care providers in the areas of primary care, mental health care, or dental health care. Shortages fall into 3 categories:¹

1. Geographic areas – a shortage of providers for the entire population within an area
2. Population groups – a shortage of providers within an area for a specific high-need population
3. Facilities – health care facilities within an area have a shortage of health professionals to meet their needs

Children with a Medical home (2021)2

A patient-centered medical home is a primary care physician or provider that serves as a child’s usual source of care. It is an important mechanism for coordination of all segments of health – physical, behavioral, and oral.

  • Have a medical home (52.4%)
  • Do not have a medical home (47.6%)

Medicaid/CHIP (FY2022)3

221 Nebraska received developmental services through Medicaid/CHIP.

30,090 children received behavioral services through Medicaid/CHIP

1,340 providers served children through Medicaid/CHIP.

80.1% of children had a preventive medical visit in 2021.2

80.0% of children had a preventive dental visit in the past year.1

33.0% of children had one or more current health conditions.2

92.6% of children are in very good to excellent health.1

Immunizations (2022)3

88.3% of Nebraska teens were immunized against meningitis caused by types A, C, W, and Y.
56.5% of Nebraska teen girls and 73.9% of Nebraska teen boys completed their HPV vaccine series.

1. National Survey of Children’s Health, 2022.

2. National Survey of Children’s Health, 2020-21.

3. National Immunization Survey-Child, 2022.