By: Patrick Kanary, Human Services Consultant, Former Director, Center for Innovative Practices at the Begun Center for Violence Prevention/Research
The evolution of Ohio’s children’s, youth and family system of care continues with the addition of the new Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Center of Excellence (COE). The center, located at Case Western Reserve University, will provide technical assistance, training, implementation support, and evaluation related to the new and expanded behavioral health services for children, youth and families. The COE will work in collaboration with OhioRise and the Family First Prevention Services Act, the COE will focus on identifying, implementing, training, and evaluating an array of intensive community-based behavioral health services for children, youth, and their families.
The COE will focus on identifying, implementing, training, and evaluating an array of intensive community-based behavioral health services for children, youth, and their families.
The Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OMHAS), in collaboration with its sister state departments, Ohio Family and Children First, and the Office of Children’s Initiatives, awarded the contract to Case Western Reserve University’s Center for Innovative Practices (CIP) at the Begun Center for Violence Prevention Research and Education. CIP is one of the original Centers of Excellence established in 2000 to identify and promote evidence-based and promising practices for youth and families. Richard Shepler, Ph.D., director of the Center for Innovative Practices, will provide the leadership, along with an expert team at CIP and the Begun Center, to implement the COE.
The COE’s portfolio includes:
- High Fidelity Wraparound
- Functional Family Therapy
- Multi-Systemic Therapy
- Healthy Families America
- Parents as Teachers
- Mobile Response and Stabilization Service
- Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths Assessment
To support and implement this wide-ranging set of services, the COE will contract with several expert partners including the Ohio Children’s Alliance, the Public Children’s Services Association of Ohio, the Ohio Child Care Resource and Referral Association and the Ohio Council of Behavioral Health and Family Services. The identified services are aligned with the goals of the state to balance the continuum of care with a focus on community-based services that support youth remaining with their families, in their homes and communities, thus reducing unnecessary out of home placements and custody relinquishment.
Workforce development is one of the most vital areas the COE will focus on.
Workforce development is one of the most vital areas the COE will focus on. It is no secret that the behavioral health field needs to train and recruit qualified staff and provide current staff with the ongoing training, support, and consultation as required by an evolving field. The COE will work closely with various state and local initiatives aimed at strengthening the state’s workforce for children, youth, and families.
The level of state and local collaboration necessary for successful implementation of the CABH COE will be significant. Building on a history of intersystem collaboration, the COE will join with the Ohio Department of Medicaid via OhioRise and ODJFS via FFPSA, and all the related stakeholders, to take Ohio’s system of care to the next level by:
- Expanding service and care coordination capacity for children with complex behavioral health needs and their families
- Building and sustaining a standardized assessment process
- Evaluating the effectiveness of services
- Providing orientation, training, coaching, and mentoring
- Working with state partner agencies to support services/processes, including telehealth
- Supporting creation of new access to in-home and community-based services
- Bolstering Ohio’s ongoing system transformation and improvement efforts
For additional information on the Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health Center of Excellence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJtdxGYM-GE
 ODM, OMHAS, CWRU presentation