The Network now has more than 900 members. Encourage your colleagues to join today.


Profile: Bonnie Strickland, Maternal and Child Health Bureau
Bonnie Strickland, who oversees the federal Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s programs for children with special health care needs, takes a national perspective on our fragmented system of care and what might be done to improve it. Read more.



Study: Developing an Enhanced Health Care Information Portal for CCS Providers
A new report prepared by Mathematica Policy Research examines how care coordination might be advanced through creation of a statewide health care information portal. The portal would integrate the administrative functions of the California Children’s Services (CCS) and Medi-Cal programs with the capability to confirm patient eligibility and submit service authorizations. Examples from two other states are described. The work was funded by the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health. Read the full report.

State Demonstration Project to Combine Services and Financing for “Dual-Eligibles”
The Department of Health Care Services is launching a demonstration project to combine the services and financing of beneficiaries enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid – known as “dual-eligibles.” By consolidating, the Department hopes to trim costs from the two entitlement programs, but some advocates are concerned. Read more and see information about a related webinar, The California Coordinated Care Initiative: What Advocates Need to Know Basics.


Data on the number of active enrollees in California Children's Services now are available on The data can be sorted by age (under 1 year and 1 to 21), and by the years 2009-2012. All counties are included, though in several counties the data are suppressed for reasons of client privacy because of low numbers of enrollment. The data were prepared by the Center for Policy, Outcomes and Prevention at Stanford University. Several other data sets are newly posted to

AFFORDABLE CARE ACT UPDATES Health Inequities and Children with Special Health Care Needs
This Catalyst Center fact sheet discusses the importance of health insurance coverage for children with special health care needs (CSHCN) and examines groups of CSHCN at greater risk for not being insured. Also from the Catalyst Center: Are Families of Medicaid-Enrolled Children with Disabilities Eligible for Subsidized Marketplace Coverage? See the fact sheet.

Preventive Services for Children with Special Needs under the Affordable Care Act
Family Voices' Project Impact has produced a fact sheet that explains preventive services available under the Affordable Care Act, and offers tips for families on developing healthy lifestyles.

MCHB Seeks Assistance in Ensuring the Children Are Signed Up for Insurance
In this video, Michael Lu, MD, associate administrator of the MCHB, discusses how maternal and child health professionals can reach out to their communities and encourage families to enroll in health coverage through the ACA before open enrollment closes on March 31.

Coveredtil26 Outreach Campaign Targets Foster Children
Children Now has launched a website and outreach campaign for, providing information about Medi-Cal coverage for former foster youth, who now are eligible until age 26. The site offers assistance on signing up and answers questions.

Webinar – The Affordable Care Act: What It Means For You And Your Patients' Oral Health
Monday, February 24
11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Pacific Time
Learn how the Affordable Care Act will affect dental coverage for children in medical practices, and how physicians can help families navigate the system and maintain their oral health.


Study: Financial and Nonfinancial Burden Among Families of CSHCN – Changes Between 2001 and 2010
Research published in Academic Pediatrics compares the prevalence between 2001 and 2009-10 of five financial and non-financial “burdens” borne by families of children with special health care needs. The authors found that in general financial burdens increased, while employment and caregiving burdens declined. Read the abstract.

Chronic Conditions Raise Risk of Error for Trauma Patients
Pediatric trauma patients with chronic conditions were significantly more vulnerable to medical errors than those without chronic conditions, according to a newly published study that used a nationally representative database. Read the study.


New Award Highlights Children’s Books with Disability Themes
The American Library Association recently added the Schneider Family Award to their Caldecott and Newbury awards for children’s books. The new award recognizes books with an artistic expression of the disability experience. Read more and make recommendations for other books.

High School Students May Apply for Leadership Forum – February 28 Deadline
Applications are due February 28 for the annual five-day Youth Leadership Forum (YLF) sponsored by the Department of Rehabilitation. High school juniors and seniors who have a disability are eligible to apply. YLF is held in Sacramento in July, and students will be housed at California State University, Sacramento. Find more information

Tax Tips for Family Caregivers
As the April tax filing deadline approaches, AARP offers six ways family caregivers can save money on their taxes. 


In its January 20 edition, the New Yorker magazine published Lives Less Ordinary: Chronically Ill Children Are Living Longer than Ever. How Should We Care for Them?

Health Homes: Perspectives from the Leaders
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Pacific Time
Learn how states are implementing health home programs under the ACA to improve care coordination and benefit from enhanced federal matching dollars to cover these services. Learn more and register.


Presentations Sought: Patient and Family Centered Care Conference
Proposals are now being accepted for presentations at the 5th Annual Patient & Family Centered Care Conference scheduled for June 16 in Los Angeles. Submit your proposal.

Healthy Communities Data Summit at UCLA
Thursday, April 3, 2014
Los Angeles, CA
This conference showcases technologies, programs, and data designed to improve patient access, health care quality and consumer engagement. Attendees include policymakers, nonprofit organizations, foundations, public health researchers and health IT developers interested in improving health care.

2014 Department of Health Care Services Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meetings
The 2014 DHCS Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meetings will be held in Sacramento from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The next meeting schedule is Friday, February 21. Meetings are open to the public.

Family Voices of California 12th Annual Health Summit
Monday, February 24
8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Holiday Inn Capitol Plaza, Sacramento
Learn about pressing issues facing children and youth with special health care needs. Hear from experts, and build relationships with professionals and legislators in the State Capitol.

2014 School-Based Health Conference: Advancing School Health in a Time of Reform
March 6-7, 2014
Marriott City Center, Oakland
Tools, tips, and resources regarding education and health reforms.

Let us know what's happening with your organization or family. E-mail Network Manager Janis Connallon at with your news or updates. Newsletter Editor: Eileen Walsh