Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy

Population Health and Health Policy

CHIPRA Cat C Yr3

Duration: 
1/22/2012 - 1/21/2013
Principal Investigator: 
Kimberley Fox
Abstract: 

Maine, in partnership with the State of Vermont was awarded a five-year Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA) Quality Demonstration Grant to "test promising ideas for improving the quality of children's health care." The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is the designated lead agency for the federally-funded initiative. The Improving Health Outcomes for Children (IHOC) project promotes the use of quality measures and information technology to improve Medicaid member children's timely access to quality care.
Under IHOC's Category C, Maine and Vermont will assess and support pediatric practices operating as patient-centered medical homes in their respective states. Maine will also pilot learning initiatives for the Pediatric PCMH Pilot sites and other pediatric practice settings including implementation of the current American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Bright Futures Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents, Third Edition.

Project URL: 
http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/oms/provider/childrens.html#ihoc
Start Date: 
Sun, 2012-01-22
End Date: 
Mon, 2013-01-21
Legacy Muskie ID: 
8509

Cutler Institute awarded $600,000 to help youth raised in foster system

Marty Zanghi

USM's Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy has been awarded a $600,000 grant to help young people raised in Maine's foster system to prepare for college and the workforce.

The money comes from the Annie E. Casey Foundation as part of a $5.4 million national effort aimed at youth who are homeless or in either the foster care or juvenile justice systems.

"Many of these young people have suffered abuse or trauma and were raised in poverty and neglect," said Marty Zanghi, the Cutler Center's youth development director.

The money -- including an expected $400,000 more in matching funds -- will pay for contracted work with agencies in the target areas, starting with the greater Portland area and Penobscot, Kennebec and Somerset counties.

Nationally and in Maine, only about 3 percent of people who grow up in the foster care system achieve a college degree, he said.

"It's dramatically lower than the rate for the general population," Zanghi said. "It's a horrible outcome."

It doesn't have to be that way, though.

"There are young people that overcome these circumstances," he said. "I know people who have master's degrees and Ph.Ds."

The Casey Foundation's national effort is being called the "Learn and Earn to Achieve Potential" (LEAP) initiative.

The initiative is working on partnerships in Maine and nine other areas: Alaska, Arizona, California, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska and New York. In each case, people will adapt two evidence-based models to meet the needs of these youth, including support to address the trauma they may have experienced in their lives.

In Maine, the work will include a pair of successful programs, Jobs for Maine Graduates (JMG) and Jobs for the Future. Results will be carefully tracked, Zanghi said.

After the first year, the program is expected to grow.

"Eventually, the additional help will be available to all children, 14 and over, in the foster care system in the state of Maine," Zanghi said.

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