On September 21, ABC will premiere its new sitcom, Speechless, about a family with a child who has special needs. The show stars Micah Fowler, a young actor who in real life and in the show has cerebral palsy, and Minnie Driver, who plays the mother of Fowler’s character, JJ. We talked to Melvin Mar, one of the show’s executive producers, to get a behind-the-scenes look at Speechless.
In 2014 and 2015, the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs conducted a survey about family engagement policies and practices in federally funded Title V maternal and child health programs and programs for children and youth with special health care needs. The findings provide a snapshot of strategies to support meaningful family engagement, effective and innovative practices, and areas of need for improvement and technical assistance.
The lives of children with chronic or complex medical conditions often are complicated by psychosocial issues and family problems such as poverty, poor parental health, substance abuse, domestic violence, and homelessness. This webinar highlighted advances in research and practice that aim to improve the well-being and health outcomes of these children with "social complexity" while reducing costs.
Ten years ago, My Flesh and Blood, a documentary about Fairfield, California-based Susan Tom and her 11 children with special needs, was broadcast. Since then, her home has undergone an Extreme Makeover, and her children are now adults. Read an interview with Susan discussing the transition of her kids to adult health care and making legal and financial preparations for their continued well-being.
Advocates, family leaders, policymakers, and other stakeholders joined us for a first step in building a national movement to promote care coordination policies and payment options that better serve children with special health care needs, families, and care providers.
If you’re familiar with the California Children’s Services (CCS) program, you’ve probably heard the story. A family moves from one county to another and their child’s CCS coverage changes or vanishes. A statewide group of CCS medical directors is working to fix that, and to encourage other improvements in the CCS program.