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AMCHP Annual Conference Call for Proposals Now Open!
AMCHP invites you to submit a session proposal for the 2014 AMCHP Annual Conference (Jan. 25-28). The theme is The Road Ahead: Challenges, Changes and Opportunities for Maternal and Child Health. The conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Click here for complete information about submitting your session proposal and for the online submission system. The deadline for submissions is Friday, Aug. 16 at 5 p.m. EST. You will be notified about the outcome of your submission by Monday, Sept. 30, 2013. If you have questions about the session proposal submission process, please contact Colleen Campbell at (703) 964-1240, ext. 16. For more information about the 2014 AMCHP Annual Conference, visit

AMCHP Convenes National Work Group on CYSHCN System Standards
On Jun. 13, AMCHP convened a national work group as part of the National Consensus Framework for Improving Quality Systems of Care for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN) project funded by the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health. The national work group provided guidance and input to a draft set of standards (structure and process) for systems of care serving CYSHCN. In welcoming the group, AMCHP CEO Michael Fraser noted the importance of this work in light of the ACA and as state Title V CYSHCN programs reexamine their role in a new health reform landscape.

Creating a comprehensive, quality system of care for CYSHCN has been one of the most challenging and pressing priorities for state and local health leaders and other stakeholders. The ACA has further heightened this need as states extend coverage to millions of uninsured adults and children, design essential health benefits, and implement new quality provisions, among other areas. Numerous national reports, initiatives, and research from over three decades have described frameworks, standards and quality measures, and are an important foundation for such a system. Health reform presents a new and critical opportunity to further advance this work and the systems that serve CYSHCN through a set of nationally endorsed standards that could help guide and undergird system practices and policies.

AMCHP will continue to work with the national work group over the summer and fall to achieve national consensus on a set of system standards that state Title V MCH programs, health plans, Medicaid and CHIP agencies, families, provider groups and others could use to inform and guide their work. A final national consensus document is planned for release in December 2013. For more information about this project, contact Karen VanLandeghem.

Voids in Knowledge: Life Course Research and Chronic Kidney Disease Webinar
Fifth in the Life Course Research Network (LCRN) series on The State of Life Course Health Development Research: Past, Present and Future, this webinar will feature Dr. Patrick Brophy, MD, MHCD and Vice Chair for Clinical Innovation and Associate Professor of Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Iowa Children's Hospital. The webinar will take place Jul. 9, 12-1 p.m. EST. For more information and to register for the webinar, click here.

Family Scholars Program-Now Accepting Applications
AMCHP, with support of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) MCHB and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, is awarding scholarships to family leaders (six scholars and three mentors) to participate in the AMCHP Family Scholars Program. The Family Scholars Program (FSP) is a 10-month program for family leaders that have experience engaging in Title V programs or Title V funded programs at the local or state level. The program is intended for family leaders that want to continue developing their skills as leaders in maternal and child health. Scholars in the program will increase their knowledge and skills associated with key maternal and child health leadership competencies through distance-based learning opportunities (e.g. topic specific conference calls, webinars, Individual Development Plan, mentoring, readings) and by attending two in-person meeting, a kick-off meeting in October and the AMCHP Annual Conference in January. Family Scholars also will be matched with seasoned family leaders, Family Mentors, who assist family scholars in their leadership journey. We are now accepting applications for both Family Scholars and Family Mentors.

Interested family leaders must submit completed application materials and be nominated by their state or territory Title V program. Title V includes MCH programs and/or programs serving CYSHCN. Applications are due by 5 p.m. EST on Jul. 17.

There will be an informational call on Thursday, Jul. 11, from 1-2 p.m. EST. To participate, call1-800-689-9374 and use pass code: 645016.

For more information, please visit the AMCHP website at E-mail materials or questions to

AMCHP Women’s Health Information Webinar Series: A Home Birth Primer for MCH Programs
In light of the recent attention on safe birthing practices and the newly released American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) policy statement on Planned Home Births, AMCHP will host the national webinar, A Home Birth Primer for MCH Programs, on Jul. 11, 2-3:30 p.m. EST. Attendees will increase their knowledge of birth rates and trends of home births, increase their knowledge of the effects of maternal and infant care services in this type of birth setting, receive a summary of the 2011 American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and 2013 AAP statements on planned home birth, and describe the practical implications of the statements for MCH programs. To register for this webinar, click here.

Evaluation 101 for Chronic Disease Epidemiologists: What New Evaluators Need to Know Webinar
The Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) will host a webinar Jul. 18, 3-4:30 p.m. EST. The webinar will be presented by two epidemiologist/evaluators from the Utah Department of Health The presenters will provide an overview of the CDC 6-Step Evaluation Framework and describe its practical application in state health departments. To register for the webinar, click here. 

CSSP Early Childhood Systems Survey
The Center for the Study of Social Policy (CSSP) launched a survey to gather information about local city, county or neighborhood initiatives working to develop a comprehensive early childhood system (prenatal-eight, with particular emphasis on the earliest years). CSSP believes that effective systems for young children have to be championed, driven, and well-implemented at the local level, and not nearly enough is known about the current efforts underway or how pioneering local communities have been successful at getting results. Also that state initiatives can and do play an important role in launching and/or sustaining local efforts, and  that AMCHP members likely are either involved in or know about the kinds of successful local early childhood systems initiatives we seek to identify. They developed an online survey to gather information from local initiatives.  The plan is to produce an analysis of the results that will be share with you.  This survey is part of a new initiative CSSP is developing with several innovative community efforts: the Early Childhood Learning and Innovation Network for Communities (EC-LINC). The deadline for response is Jul. 22.

WAPC Webinar on Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) Scoring 
Join the Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care (WAPC) for a new webinar offering, "Assessment of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome: Tools for Newborn Nursery Staff." The webinar will be presented on Jul. 24, 3:30- 4:30 p.m. CST. The webinar is intended for health care providers, community service providers, and public health professionals who want to learn more about scoring infants for NAS and share the goal of improving care for infants affected by opioids. For more information, click here.

Life Course Metrics Project – Request for Public Comment on Final Indicator Set
In early 2012, AMCHP launched the Life Course Metrics Project, a collaborative effort to identify and promote a standardized set of indicators that can be used to measure progress using the life course approach to improve maternal and child health. The project is funded with the support of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. AMCHP is pleased to announce we are now requesting public comments on the final set of life course indicators.

The final set of indicators represents a culminating product of a yearlong effort by seven state-based teams, informed by the input of a National Expert Panel of thought leaders on the life course theory and linking theory to practice. Over the past several months, these state teams distilled 413 proposed life course indicators down to a final set of 59 indicators, categorized into 13 thematic topic areas.

AMCHP hopes to gather feedback from MCH stakeholders and partners on the utility and application of the final set of indicators. The final indicator set and instructions for submitting public comments are available on the AMCHP website. The public comment period closes on Jul. 31. For questions about the public comment process on the final set of life course indicators, please contact Andria Cornell.

Infant Safe Sleep: Moving Data to Action Webinar
AMCHP is partnering with the Association of SIDS and Infant Mortality Programs and Project IMPACT to offer this webinar featuring an update on the Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) Case Registry, a public health surveillance system that collects comprehensive information about SUID cases, and highlighting best practices on efforts to promote safe sleep, presented by Dr. Stephanie Regenold from the B’More for Healthy Babies Safe Sleep campaign. The webinar will be held Jul. 31, 3 – 4:30 p.m. EST. For more information and to register, click here

Rally4Babies: Learning Happens Right from the Start
Zero to Three will be hosting a virtual rally to promote early learning policies that focus specifically on babies and toddlers. Presented by award winning journalist and CEO of Starfish Media Group, Soledad O’Brien, the event will be streamed live on YouTube Jul. 8, 2-2:30 p.m. EST. Participate from wherever you are to hear prominent guest speakers discuss why we need our early learning policies to begin at birth. For more information and updates on the event, click here. You can also sign the Rally4Babies petition to urge the administration and Congress to increase investments in early learning for babies and toddlers!

AMCHP Leadership Institute for State CYSHCN Directors
AMCHP, with a grant from the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health, is implementing the Leadership Institute for State CYSHCN Directors. The overall purpose of the project is to improve the effectiveness of state CYSHCN directors to lead and transform their programs in a time of change and health reform. The ultimate goal of the project is to strengthen state systems of care for CYSHCN. The institute will provide state Title V CYSHCN directors with targeted, intensive, and ongoing training to provide them with a comprehensive picture of the CYSHCN populations in the context of the life course approach, health equity/health disparities, and transitions to adult care. Program components of the Leadership Institute for State CYSHCN Directors include two face-to-face CYSHCN directors meetings at the AMCHP annual conferences; an invitation-only listserv exclusively for CYSHCN directors; and the creation of a targeted, comprehensive new CYSHCN director curriculum. AMCHP also plans to strengthen the CYSHCN e-Portal on the AMCHP website, conduct a series of bi-monthly webinars targeted for CYSHCN state directors, and develop a sustainability plan to ensure ongoing program components align with the AMCHP Strategic Plan.

By providing adequate support, training, and peer-to-peer networking opportunities, the Leadership Institute for State CYSHCN Directors will help promote comprehensive, quality systems of care serving CYSHCN and their families. AMCHP will reach out to all state CYSHCN directors shortly to share more detailed information. For more information on this project, please contact Treeby Brown, associate director for child and adolescent health.

The True Meaning of Succession Planning Webinar
Succession planning is not just about identifying and grooming the next generation of leaders. It is an on-going part of workforce development efforts designed to sustain organization or agency capacity. It is supported by activities such as recruiting and retaining a competent workforce by developing skills, knowledge, and building leadership capacity. Particularly in this time of great change in state Title V programs, succession planning is of critical importance to ensure that states have the qualified workforce with the needed expertise for ensuring the continuity and prosperity of maternal and child health programs. On Jul. 24 at 1 p.m. EST, AMCHP will host a webinar, The True Meaning of Succession Planning, to share successful succession planning strategies. During the webinar, Michael Warren, MD, MPH, FAAP, Director of Maternal and Child Health for the Tennessee Department of Health, will provide an overview of the concept of succession planning and share his efforts related to workforce development in his state. Dr. Warren will be joined by a Linda McElwain, RN, Section Chief of MCH for the Wyoming Department of Health, and Patricia Tilley, MS, MA, Acting Bureau Chief for the Bureau of Population Health and Community Services and Title V Director of the New Hampshire MCH Program will share their success stories and resources related to building a competent workforce. After this webinar, participants will be able to: define succession planning, understand the importance of succession planning, and understand how succession planning “fits” in with larger workforce development efforts. To register, click here.

DMCHWD: Performance Measurement TA Webinar Series
Save the Dates! The Division of MCH Workforce Development (DMCHWD) is launching a technical assistance webinar series for MCH training program directors and data coordinators. Part one will be held on Jul. 16, 2-3:30 p.m. EST with a follow-up breakout session on Jul. 24, 2-3:30 p.m. EST. For more information and to register, click here.

Maternal Health Town Hall Listening Session
The Town Hall Listening Session will serve as a platform to share and discuss proposed strategies and to solicit ideas in support of the National Maternal Health Initiative. It also is an opportunity to engage and obtain feedback from the public on HRSA strategic thinking around a national strategy to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality, and improve the quality and safety of maternity care in the United States. The meeting is open to the public and will be hosted virtually through webinar and by phone. Participants will have an opportunity to interact with presenters via the chat function in the public comment section of the webinar system. In addition, there will be up to 100 phone lines available to individuals who choose to participate by phone. The phone lines will be made available on a first-come, first-served basis. Time will be provided for public comments, each limited to five minutes. The meeting will be held Aug. 27, 2-3:30 p.m. EST. Registration and written public comments are due Aug. 19, 5 p.m. EST. Call information for this meeting will be provided upon registration. To register for this meeting, click here. For questions and to submit your public comment, contact Keisher Highsmith, DrPH.

AMCHP-CDC Skills-Building Suite: Evidence-Based Practice: Moving Along the Continuum from Selection to Sustainability
Recent years have brought an increased focus on the value and necessity of investing in programs that demonstrate evidence of producing desired outcomes. The ACA, for example, authorized funds that enabled many Title V programs to implement evidence-based programs related to key MCH issues such as home visiting and teen pregnancy. Yet, translating research to action, “taking what works and using it,” remains a common challenge for MCH programs. To provide on-going support for “taking what works and applying it,”, MCHP, in partnership with Community Guide staff at CDC, is thrilled to announce the AMCHP-CDC Skills-Building Suite: Evidence-Based Programs: Moving Along the Continuum from Selection to Sustainability. This three-part virtual workshop is designed to increase state MCH program capacity to better understand evidence-based programs, dialogue about opportunities and challenges in implementing evidence-based programs, understand complexity in fidelity and adaptation, and consider evaluation and sustainability of evidence-based programs. By the end of your participation in the Skills-Building Suite you will be able to: compare evidence-based strategies and interventions to program needs; identify extent of adaptation needed for selected intervention; and suggest evaluation methods or sustainability criteria for the intervention. The Skills-Building Suite will be presented via 90-minute virtual sessions over three days, Sept. 5, 10 and 13. Reserve your seat in the Skills-building Suite today! For more information, contact Sharron Corle.

Webinar Series: Leading in Changing Times
In working to improve the lives of women, children and families, leadership is an essential role in MCH programs. It is leaders who have a vision, take initiative, influence people, solve problems, take responsibility – who make things happen. And, whether or not they have a formal title, everyone is engaged in the process of leadership. Likewise, everyone can develop their leadership effectiveness.

AMCHP efforts to strengthen the capacity of the MCH community to engage in the leadership process recognize that leadership development is a process, not an event. The Leading in Changing Times Series is an initiative launched by AMCHP as part of our larger efforts to support a diverse, effective and competent workforce in state and territorial MCH programs. The webinar series is a year-long, three-part project, blending principles of key leadership theory with real-world stories from senior-level MCH leaders. These 45-minutes leadership “conversations” are designed to share leadership ideas and inspiration.

In a rapidly changing environment, full of shifting workforce demographics (diverse workforce, multi-generation workforce, retirements), budget cuts, hiring freezes, MCH programs need to spread leadership broad and deep. The target audience for this series is both aspiring MCH leaders and those who currently hold leadership positions in MCH programs.

Part 1 of this series, Great Leaders are Great Decision Makers: The Importance of Decisiveness, is scheduled for Sept. 18 at 3:15 p.m. EST. Karen Trierweiler, director, programs and services, Prevention Services for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment will provide an overview of the key concept, leadership and decision-making, followed by her personal experience in establishing priorities to commit to a course of action in her state.

After this event, participants will:

  • Explore the elements of decision making in public health leadership theory
  • Understand the benefits of having a defined approach to prioritizing among many concerns and issues
  • Learn concrete strategies and examples that they can use to prioritize maternal and child health efforts in their state

For more information and to register for this webinar, click here.

Text4baby Kicks off 2013 State Enrollment Contest!
AMCHP is formally supporting the 2013 Text4baby State Enrollment Contest which launched on May 14. Text4baby is a free comprehensive personalized maternal child health education and support program. It provides critical, evidence-based health and safety information through text messaging. The objective of the contest will see which state can enroll the most text4baby users between May 12 and Oct. 21. Winners will be announced in early November during the American Public Health Association (APHA) Annual Meeting in Boston, MA. AMCHP is pleased to be a partner in the text4baby initiative and is encouraging our membership to promote the service to the families they serve. For more information about the contest, click here.

Transforming Care Through Disruptive Design
The Centering® Healthcare Institute will host its 4th National Conference: Transforming Care through Disruptive Design from Oct. 26-29 in Washington, DC. The conference offers a great learning opportunity to hear visionary keynotes, action-provoking panel discussions and a wide variety of breakout sessions which will offer interactive exploration of ideas. Join clinicians, researchers, policy makers, administrators and students who come together to discuss ideas for transforming healthcare delivery. For more information, click here or go to the Centering® Healthcare Institute to learn more about this healthcare model.