• June 2012
  • Vol. 13, No. 5

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Program Integration to Improve Well-Being

Strategies for increasing collaboration among the many Federal, State, and federally funded agencies tasked with promoting and protecting child well-being is the focus of a new report funded by First Focus, the Nemours Foundation, the California Endowment, and Voices for America's Children. The authors explore a number of administrative approaches and strategies that can increase the level of partnership across agencies by improving the design, implementation, and evaluation of children's programs.

The paper, Improving Children's Health and Well-being by Integrating Children's Programs, references the cooperative requirement among Federal and State agencies for new child- and family-serving programs created by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). An appendix of these ACA-mandated children's programs is included at the end of the report.

The paper also is based on information gathered from the Children's Outcomes Project (COP), a learning community comprised of State- and community-based teams and national program and policy experts that work to improve child health and well-being. COP is heavily invested in bringing about innovative policy changes resulting from multisector initiatives.

The authors make recommendations for agencies in the area of program design and applications:

  • Agencies should develop comprehensive approaches that recognize families' frequent involvement in multiple sectors, including health, education, social services, and more.
  • Agencies should, when possible, utilize a community-based population approach. 
  • Agencies should collaborate on the development of funding opportunities to ensure cross-sector input.
  • Agencies should allocate a portion of new program funding to infrastructure and systems development.

The authors also recommend more coordinated Federal approaches.

Improving Children's Health and Well-being by Integrating Children's Programs was authored and presented by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago and is available on the First Focus website:

http://www.firstfocus.net/sites/default/files/Improving%20Children%27s%20Health%20and%20Well-being%20by%20Integrating%20Children%27s%20Programs_Final%20Report.pdf (743 KB)


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