Dates of Program: December 1989 through August 1999
Field of Work: Integrating health services for children.
Problem Synopsis: Most public funding for child health services flows from distinct programs that are separately funded and/or regulated by federal and/or state agencies. In many cases, the vital health services funded through this system have given rise to agencies and programs that provide only a single service or narrow set of closely related services. This has led to entirely separate programs for preventive health services, maternal and child health services, and family planning services. This precise targeting, however, has contributed to the fragmentation of services for children and has created burdensome logistical problems for their parents.
Synopsis of the Work: Improving Child Health Services: Removing Categorical Barriers to Care tested the feasibility of improving the efficiency and effectiveness of child health services by removing restrictions on the use of categorical program funds so that those funds could be used to finance services based on children's needs rather than on program requirements. The aim was to allow greater flexibility and coordination of those services required by children with multiple health care needs.
Ten communities were funded under the program to pursue improvements in child health services by reducing categorical barriers to care. According to the National Program Office report on the program: