In recent years, the child welfare system has begun to shift toward a prevention model focused on reducing out-of-home placements and keeping families together. Because primary care — and especially pediatrics — includes a focus on prevention and is often the main point of contact between families and the health care system, primary care providers can also play a critical role in preventing child welfare system involvement. Furthermore, Medicaid financing and quality improvement strategies can strengthen primary care efforts aimed at reducing the need for child welfare interventions.
This webinar explored opportunities for primary care and Medicaid to help prevent families’ involvement with the child welfare system including: (1) practice-level approaches to address risk factors for child welfare involvement, such as unmet social, relational, and behavioral health needs; and (2) Medicaid financing and quality strategies for strengthening pediatric primary care to better support healthy child development and family well-being. A panel of subject matter experts — including a pediatrician, a licensed clinical psychologist, and a researcher — discussed approaches to improving policy and practice to better meet the needs of families at risk of child welfare system involvement. This webinar was made possible through support from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation.
I. Welcome and Introduction
Speaker: Kamala Allen, MHS, Senior Vice President, Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS)
K. Allen provided welcoming remarks, introductions, and a project overview.
II. Report Findings and Policy Recommendations
Speaker: Olivia Randi, MPP, Program Officer, CHCS
O. Randi summarized key findings from a forthcoming brief on primary care’s role in preventing child welfare involvement and recommendations for state Medicaid agencies, including enhanced payment approaches, workforce development efforts, and cross-system collaborations.
III. Panel Discussion: How Medicaid Can Support Primary Care Approaches to Prevent Child Welfare System Involvement
Moderator: Kelsey Brykman, MS, Senior Program Officer, CHCS
K. Brykman facilitated a panel discussion on opportunities for primary care practices to play a role in preventing families’ child welfare system involvement and how Medicaid can support them.
IV. Moderated Q&A
The audience was invited to participate in a moderated question-and-answer session.