Child Health

As children grow, they develop skills that will impact the rest of their lives. As such, we created several initiatives and programs to build systems that improve the physical and emotional health of children. These shared efforts promote best-in-class emergency medical care for children and encourage positive parenting, child development, and school readiness.

What Goals Are We Trying to Accomplish?

Increase the number of children who receive a developmental screening.

  • Early identification of developmental disorders is critical to the well-being of children and their families. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends screening tests begin at the nine month visit.

Decrease the number of hospital admissions for non-fatal injury among children ages zero through nine.

  • Reducing the burden of non-fatal injury can greatly improve the quality of life and cost savings for children and their families.

Increase the number of children who are adequately insured.

  • Inadequately insured children are more likely to lack appropriate and timely care, be without a medical home, and be less likely to receive needed referrals and receive family-centered care.

Which Programs and Initiatives Help Us Accomplish Our Goals?

Title V Maternal and Child Health Block Grant: Funding 59 states and jurisdictions, our largest grant aims to provide children:

  • Access to quality care, especially for those with low-incomes or limited availability of care
  • An increase in health assessments and follow-up diagnostic and treatment services
  • Access to preventive and child care services

Bright Futures Exit Disclaimer: Through a collaborative of federal and state partners, the initiative develops curricula, training, guidance, and research; and produces Bright Futures: Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents Exit DisclaimerBright Futures provides recommendations for the top 10 areas of child development. Along with presenting the most up-to-date information on preventive screenings and services by visit, Bright Futures provides visit-by-visit guidance for health care providers.

Home Visiting: In partnership with the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), states, territories, and tribal entities develop and implement voluntary, evidence-based, and locally-managed programs that support pregnant women and families. Advice, guidance, and resources help at-risk parents of children from birth to kindergarten entry tap into the resources and hone the skills they need to raise children who are physically, socially, and emotionally healthy and ready to learn.

Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC): EMSC funds and supports improvements in pediatric emergency care in every state and territory through competitive demonstration grants or cooperative agreements to state governments and accredited schools of medicine.

The four main programs in EMSC are:

  • State Partnership grants that ensure that pediatric emergency care is integrated into the larger emergency medical services system
  • Targeted Issues grants that support innovative cross-cutting pediatric emergency care projects of national significance
  • State Partnership Regionalization of Care grants that develop systems of care models to improve pediatric emergency care capacity in rural and tribal communities
  • The Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN) Exit Disclaimer which supports the infrastructure to conduct meaningful and rigorous multi-institutional studies in the management of acute illness and injury in children across the continuum of emergency medicine

EMSC also funds two cooperative agreements:

  • An EMSC Data Center to support the collection of data, as well as centralize and coordinate PECARN studies.
  • The EMSC Innovation and Improvement Center to guide development and strategic change based on quality improvement initiatives.

Child Safety Collaborative Improvement & Innovation Network (CoIIN): Working with our federal partners along with more than 30 national organizations and 21 states, participants work towards reducing child deaths, hospitalization, and ER visits from preventable injuries.

Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS): brings together primary care providers, teachers, families, and caregivers to help children grow up healthy and ready-to-learn by addressing their physical, emotional, and social health in a broad-based and coordinated way.

Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems

Bridging the Word Gap: This addresses the difference between the number of words children from low-income families are exposed to as compared to children from high-income families. Efforts aim to close that gap through the support of innovative solutions that can help promote early-language development among children from low-income families in the U.S. We also support the Bridging the Word Gap Research Network Exit Disclaimer.

Date Last Reviewed:  July 2016