Building Capacity to Address the Mental Health Needs of Families: Pilots Launched with Training of Therapists, Team Leaders

Eighteen mental health therapists and team leaders from four pilot communities completed training in Moving Beyond Depression,™ an in-home treatment program for mothers experiencing depression, at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital this week.  Community mental health providers in Miami-Dade, Tampa, Gainesville and Jacksonville will partner with home visiting programs over the next year to pilot the evidence-based intervention. The collaboration is aimed at building community capacity by leveraging the experience and expertise of both mental health and home visiting programs. Home visitors will receive training on the intervention in Miami, Tampa and Jacksonville later this month.Group 1

Community mental health providers participating in the MIECHV-funded pilots include: Citrus Health Network, Miami-Dade; Meridian Behavioral Healthcare, Gainesville; Success 4 Kids & Families, Tampa; REACHUP, Tampa; the Healthy Start Coalition of Miami-Dade, and Child Guidance Center, Jacksonville. During pilot implementation, mental health providers will work with Florida MIECHV to assure services are reimbursed by Medicaid managed care as well as assist in developing strategies for bringing the intervention to scale statewide.

This is the first in a series of statewide projects to address the mental health needs of families with children age 0-3.  Training to support the implementation of the Mothers and Babies Program through Healthy Start and MIECHV-funded home visiting programs will begin in the fall. Florida MIECHV is working with Northwestern University and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to develop and evaluate a train-the-trainer model for the program which teaches participants how to effectively respond to stress in their lives. It offers a strategy to prevent the onset and worsening of depressive symptoms among at-risk women. Florida MIECHV is also undertaking a collaborative effort with Early Steps, the state’s early intervention program, to integrate infant mental health consultation into home visiting programs in three demonstration project areas.

The pilots were included as a strategy to respond to a priority need identified in a statewide assessment conducted for a 2015 HRSA Competitive Grant proposal (D89MC28265).