Medical Home Meeting: October 10, 2017 and November 14, 2017

On October 15, 2017 we had the pleasure of having three Medical Social Workers from the Department of Children and Families(DCF)  speak about their services.  They explained that they are each stationed at an area office.  They are there to assist the ongoing social workers when there is a child removed from a families care.  They assist in setting up a 14 day medical screen and 30 day medical screen.  When children are removed from their home, it is sometimes a difficult and chaotic process.  So when you add a child with medical complexities, many things can be missed.  For example: medications the child takes, upcoming appointments, medical diagnosis, equipment, and what type of medical care the child requires. These are all things that the DCF medical social workers can help the family manage. Here are the names of the medical social workers and what area office they are connected with:

Cristin White- Department of Children and Families, High Street Springfield Office

Kristin Whittle- Department of Children and Families, Van Wart Area Office

Nivia Colon-Berrios- Department of Children and Families, Holyoke Area Office

They are wonderful to work with and can always lend a hand!

On November 14, 2017 we had Paula Euber, the Area Director for the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission join us, as well as, Cheryl Cruz a supervisor at the Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission.  Mass Rehab has many different services to offer for both children, adults, and transitioning youth.  They supplied the group with hand-outs, but due to the sizes of them I am unable to attach here.  However, they shared that the best way to get services through Mass Rehab is to just call them and make a referral.  They will guide the family through the process.  If Mass Rehab is not a good fit, they help connect the client to services that will benefit them! Paula Euber can be reached at (413)736-7296 ext 111. The following website also has great information: https://www.mass.gov/vocational-rehabilitation 

We also had Morganne McCarthy from the Weldon Rehabilitation Center join the group.  They explained the referral and insurance process for pediatrics OT, PT, and speech.  They currently have no wait list for PT but longer wait lists for OT and speech.  The Weldon staff explained they really work closely with patients and insurance companies to ensure they have the time to work with children on their set goals and make sure they reach their ultimate potential.  Their website also offers further information: http://www.mercycares.com/weldon

As December 2017 approaches us, we want to thank everyone again for their hard work and dedication to the wonderful work that you do.  During the November meeting, we discussed that the 4C program will be ending at the end of December.  We are so grateful for all the support this community of families and providers have given us.  We truly are all part of something amazing, that hopefully has just begun! That being said, we are currently working on handing over responsibilities of this meeting to a new team of people.  Thank you all who have volunteered to help! We look forward to seeing everyone at the next meeting, December 12, 2017 at 9:15am at Shriners.

 

 

 

Medical Home Meeting: September 12, 2017

Welcome back everyone! It was so great to see all who were able to join us on 9/12/2017 for the first Medical Home Meeting of the season.  As always, it’s a pleasure to sit around the table with people who hold such a great amount of knowledge.

Shelly and Michelle from Behavioral Health Network- Project FIT (Families in Transition) joined us to present on their newly funded program. Project FIT is grant funded by the Health Policy Commission of Massachusetts.  The goals of this program are to increase engagement with primary care treatment, reduce hospitalizations, improve housing, and increase school attendance for children in the home.  The program staffs Clinical Care Managers (master level clinicians) and Community Health Workers (CHW).  The process begins with the family meeting with their team to assess the family’s strengths and area of needs.  Then the team will guide the family in reaching goals with the hope that the family will become autonomous.  The grant is funded until December 31, 2018 and will serve about 145 families.

Some key aspects when referring the patient:

  • Eligibility: families with children in the home, unstable housing, and at least one member in the home having an un-met behavioral health needs. (These terms are loosely denied and they encourage phone calls and referrals to be made even if you are questioning eligibility)
  • Spanish and English speaking staff members and access to translation services
  • Currently serving Hampden County area
  • They are currently working with three housing agencies whose referrals do get first priority
  • Referrals can be made by calling (413)304-2904 or using this referral sheet.

For further information please refer to this quick information sheet provided by Project FIT.

At the conclusion of the meeting Eric Volz-Benoit had expressed that the MA Pediatric Home Nursing Care Campaign is looking for families and health care workers to testify in support of the Patient Bill of Rights, An Act Requiring Protection for the Continuous Skilled Care of Medically Fragile Children in the Commonwealth (H.1959) at the State House.  Anyone who is interested in participating should contact Eric Volz-Benoit (Western MA Representative) at eric.volzbenoit@gmail.com, or Angela Ortiz (Campaign Director) at manursingcampaign@gmail.com.  For more information you can check out their Facebook page.

We concluded the meeting with people contributing ideas for future speakers.  We greatly appreciate everyone’s ongoing excitement about the group and hope you continue to spread the word to other professionals and families. We hope to see new and old faces at our next meeting on October 10, 2017, 9:15am at Shriner’s Hospital.

 

 

Medical Home Meeting: June 13, 2017

June 13, 2017 was our final Medical Home meeting before summer break.  Elaine Gabovitch joined us at the meeting and introduced herself as the new Director of the Department of Public Health.

During this meeting we heard from Jill Chaban and Meredith Ferra from Epic Health.  Jill and Meredith explained that Epic Health care is merging with PSA and now will be called Eveanna.  They shared a wonderful slide show of services through Eveanna.  Although some of the services did not apply to this area, it was great to see what  services could possibly come in the future.

Lois Brown from Stavros, Home Sweet Home Program shared some amazing resources with the group.  She explained that her program is able to help families with obtaining ramps for their homes or apartments.  Lois is very knowledgeable in regards to this process and has been extremely helpful with many families.  Lois can be contacted at (413)256-0473.  Here is the FundingPacket she shared with the group and wanted us to pass it along.

Thank you everyone for their attendance this year and participating in this group.  We would also like to thank all the speakers this year for sharing their knowledge on many different topics.  We hope you all enjoy your summer and look forward to seeing you at the next meeting; September 12, 2017 at 9:15am, at Shriners.