213133 Promoting mental health in child care: Complementary roles of child care health consultants and mental health consultants

Wednesday, November 11, 2009: 9:05 AM

Kay Johnson, MPH, EdM , Johnson Group Consulting, Hinesburg, VT
Many young children are experiencing social, emotional, and behavioral challenges that go undetected or untreated and interfere with their overall development, early school success, and long-term mental health. Much can be done in through fiscal and program policy to support and improve the healthy mental development of young children. Today's policies and practices are typically fragmented, have complex eligibility schemes, and have confusing entry points that segment the population of young children in need. At the same time, early care and education programs such as child care provide a logical setting in which to offer services and supports. Financing for early childhood mental health consultation is critical to such efforts. Purpose: This presentation will focus on financing for early childhood mental health consultation in child care, based on a series of policy research and analysis projects. Methods and results: First, case study field research found that early childhood mental health consultation in child care can be financed through a blend of public funding streams. Second, analysis of existing federal funding streams identified opportunities through entitlements such as Medicaid, as well as mental health, public health, substance abuse, and early child care and education funding streams. Thirds, a checklist was piloted and disseminated for use in analyzing and assessing current fiscal and program policies. Conclusions and implications: Perhaps the most important lesson learned is that early childhood mental health systems of support should be and can be infused into child care and other early care and education programs.

Learning Objectives:
1. Demonstrate knowledge of the core federal funding streams available to support early childhood mental health consultation in child care setting using a system map and modeling. 2. Analyze the use of federal and state funding streams in their own states and communities using a checklist of questions. 3. Discuss the opportunities and barriers to use of federal and state funding streams to support early childhood mental health consultation in child care settings based on their analysis with checklist.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Research Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Dartmouth Medical Center; Kay Johnson is past director of Project THRIVE at NCCP and has been a leader in MCH policy developments for more than 25 years.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.