New Project Seeks to Enhance Early Childhood Improvement Efforts
Jan. 23, 2019
BOSTON– An urgent national focus is developing around improving services and supports for children and families during the early years of life. This focus has invigorated efforts to improve early childhood systems so that all children have an equal chance at lifelong health and well-being.
As this work has progressed, a critical need to understand the different initiatives and approaches—given varying infrastructure, needs, and conditions—has emerged. A new project, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and co-led by NICHQ and Child Trends, aims to address that need. By reviewing the current early childhood landscape and synthesizing those findings, this project will identify barriers and opportunities for improving early childhood outcomes and promoting health equity.
“When those children and families with the most need have the least access to resources, cycles of inequity become entrenched in our social structure,” says NICHQ Chief Health Officer Elizabeth Coté, MD, MPA. “Once we better understand approaches that have diminished some of the existing inequities in early childhood, we can create programs, policies, and systems that lift up those children who most need support.”
Over the course of the 18-month project, NICHQ and Child Trends will review, catalogue, and highlight existing early childhood initiatives, and disseminate lessons-learned to health, early care, and education stakeholders. By highlighting states and communities that have developed multisector approaches, the findings will encourage an integrated systems approach to early childhood improvement work.
“This project seeks to bring together knowledge and findings that support stakeholders across the early childhood spectrum, building pathways and partnerships that can transform early childhood systems,” says NICHQ President and CEO Scott D. Berns, MD, MPH, FAAP. “By finding opportunities to align efforts, we can enhance shared learnings, quicken the pace of improvement, and develop the cohesive systems families need to thrive.”
NICHQ Announces Communities for Kindergarten Readiness Initiative
NICHQ and child education outcomes leader StriveTogether today announced six communities will participate in their joint initiative. Called the StriveTogether Prenatal to Age 3 Impact and Improvement Network, the goal is to ensure kindergarten readiness for children by focusing on healthy beginnings, family support, quality care and excellent learning environments from infancy to age 3.
NICHQ Launches Two New Early Childhood Initiatives
NICHQ is proud to announce two new Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded projects that aim to do just that. The projects tackle different early childhood levers and seek to address key drivers for improving early childhood outcomes through early childhood systems improvement.
New NICHQ Initiative Targets Pediatric Settings to Improve Early Childhood Development
Research shows that healthcare providers are uniquely positioned to support socioemotional development in early years. NICHQ’s newest initiative plans to make the most of those findings through a 30-month project that will improve early childhood socioemotional development by using pediatric settings as a primary point of intervention.
Early Childhood Expert Jill Sells Joins NICHQ
Innovative early childhood health leader Jill Sells, MD, FAAP, is joining the National Institute for Children’s Health Quality (NICHQ) as its Clinical Director of Early Childhood Initiatives. Sells brings decades of experience leading equity-focused, early childhood, system-level efforts that have led to improved children’s health outcomes.
NICHQ Selected for Unprecedented National Partnership to Improve Kindergarten Readiness
As part of a $6.5 million partnership funded by the Pritzker Children’s Initiative (PCI), NICHQ, in collaboration with StriveTogether, will be leading an initiative to support early childhood health. It focuses on increasing school readiness and reducing disparities in children ages birth to 3 by building the capability of local providers to track and leverage data to drive improvement.
NICHQ to Lead the National Network of Perinatal Quality Collaboratives Coordinating Center
NICHQ is proud to announce it was selected to be the coordinating center for the National Network of Perinatal Quality Collaboratives (NNPQC). In this role, NICHQ will serve as the resource hub for state-based perinatal quality collaboratives (PQCs) working on initiatives to improve maternal and child health outcomes. More specifically, NICHQ will provide change management and quality improvement (QI) technical assistance and facilitate network communication.