Family Leadership, Parent Support Providers, and more

Whether you are a parent or other family member who is interested in getting involved in advocacy, or a professional who supports families of children experiencing mental, emotional developmental, or behavioral challenges, you are an important link in the network of services and supports for children with special health care needs. Here are a few resources and training opportunities that came to our attention in the last week:

Using Social Media to Increase Family Leadership

Presenter: Maureen Casey

Sponsored by the National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness and National Family Association For Deaf-Blind.

This webinar will discuss different social media platforms and how families and their professional partners can harness the power of the internet to inform family leaders and increase advocacy and leadership. No registration is required.

To accommodate schedules, this webinar will be held twice, one during the day and one in the evening.
February 7th 11am PT, 12pm MT, 1pm CT, 2pm ET
February 10th 4pm PT, 5pm MT, 6pm CT, 7pm ET

This webinar will be closed captioned and recorded. Visit this page for details, including software requirements.

Parent Support Provider Certification: Scholarships available

Certified Parent Support Providers can brag about their credential! They meet the national standard of care for helping families who have children experiencing emotional, developmental, behavioral, substance use, or mental health issues. Now is a good time to apply for national certification. There are new scholarships from OptumHealth to cover $250 of the $350 cost of national certification as a Parent Support Provider. Go to www.certification.ffcmh.org/apply to learn more.

Bright Futures Family Network

Bright Futures for Families is a national initiative for families and communities to promote and improve the health and well-being of children of all ages. The January newsletter provides an introduction to the network’s member organizations.

 

As always, please call us at 303-733-3000 or 800-881-8272 with any questions.

The commitments we make to each other

In his Inaugural Address today, President Obama spoke eloquently about the publicly funded programs that ensure vulnerable people have access to the care and services they need:

“We, the people, still believe that every citizen deserves a basic measure of security and dignity. We must make the hard choices to reduce the cost of health care and the size of our deficit. But we reject the belief that America must choose between caring for the generation that built this country and investing in the generation that will build its future. For we remember the lessons of our past, when twilight years were spent in poverty, and parents of a child with a disability had nowhere to turn.

“We do not believe that in this country, freedom is reserved for the lucky, or happiness for the few. We recognize that no matter how responsibly we live our lives, any one of us, at any time, may face a job loss, or a sudden illness, or a home swept away in a terrible storm. The commitments we make to each other – through Medicare, and Medicaid, and Social Security – these things do not sap our initiative; they strengthen us. They do not make us a nation of takers; they free us to take the risks that make this country great.”

– President Barack Obama, January 21, 2013

As we begin a new presidential term, what are your hopes for our nation, or for Colorado, regarding health care? Where do our commitments to each other need to be renewed, strengthened, or changed?

Health Care News Roundup

Infographic: what matters to consumers in the new Colorado Health Benefits ExchangeColorado’s Health Exchange: What Consumers Want

As full implementation of the Affordable Care Act draws nearer, advocates and policymakers across Colorado are hard at work developing plans for the state’s new Health Benefits Exchange. Michael Booth at the Denver Post takes a look at the results of recent community forums that asked consumers what features or qualities are important to them in a tool that is supposed to help them understand their options and choose a health insurance plan. Click on the image at left to see the infographic larger.

Share Your Health Insurance Story (CCHI)

Is your insurance unaffordable? Have your rates increased unreasonably? Tell us about it! The Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, an advocacy organization that works for barrier-free access to quality healthcare, wants to hear your story. We are building a storybank – a collection of real peoples’ experiences with the healthcare system – so that we can better inform the media, elected officials, and our fellow Coloradans about important issues. We want to help you make your voice heard. Click here to share your story! 

Upcoming Events

On Tuesday, January 22, 12:00 – 1:30pm MST, health care providers and administrators are invited to a webinar hosted by the National Wraparound Initiative: Using Medicaid Health Homes with Wraparound to Serve Youth Populations with Complex Behavioral Health Needs. Click to register. This webinar will provide an overview of the Medicaid Health Home provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and its application to children with serious and complex behavioral health needs. Learn what administrative, workforce, and practice level strategies states can adopt within the Health Home model to implement a high quality wraparound and intensive care coordination approach for these youths and their families.

The 5th Annual Jewish Disabilities Awareness Day and Family Resource Fair, Finding Ability in Disability: Promoting Understanding and Inclusion, is on Sunday, January 27, 2:00 – 5:00pm at the Elaine Wolf Theatre and the Robert E. Loup Jewish Community Center, 350 South Dahlia Street in Denver. Free and open to the public.

PEAK Parent Center’s Conference on Inclusive Education is coming up, February 7-8, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Denver.  Parents, teachers, special educators, school administrators and other school professionals will all find something of interest in the speakers, workshops, and break-out sessions. There’s still time to register, but hurry, since the event may sell out!

Firefly Autism is having an intensive Social Skills Camp for children with Autism from March 25-29.  We want to get the word out and would appreciate your support in letting your families know, and the Autism Community at large.  Please refer any questions to Jenny Blankenship, Director of Outreach & Social Skills Services, at jblankenship@fireflyautism.org (303-759-1192, x12).

Making Colorado a better place for children and youth with special health care needs