Welfare Watch - October 16, 2009 - National Organization of State Associations for Children Meeting Update

GAHSC has been a member of the National Association of State Associations for Children (NOSAC) for over 15 years.   During that time, NOSAC has supported efforts through the Building Bridges initiative of the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Office of Child & Adolescent Services, to support the full array of services for all foster children including those with mental and behavioral health needs. The Building Bridges Resolution includes the importance of residential treatment as part of the full array of services. NOSAC has also supported efforts in federal legislation to procure Medicaid funding for therapeutic foster care and to clarify the difference between unlicensed and licensed facilities with reference to HR 911 in Congress.  

We recently met in Denver for our Fall Conference.  At that meeting, we were pleased to meet with representatives of Casey Family Programs including Page Walley.  They discussed their initiative to focus on permanency for children in the child welfare system. Casey Family Programs is focused on improving outcomes for youth in foster care.  They are focused in increased permanency for children.  For those who must remain in foster care, the Casey Foundation strives to improve their self-sufficiency by focusing on education, employment, and mental health needs. This correlates highly with GAHSC's and our member agenciesí work on the collection and use of outcomes and the work of family support providers to ensure permanency and safety. We are working closely with Casey in Georgia as they consult with DHS around family centered practice and performance based contracting with providers.    

Also at the NOSAC meeting, there was discussion regarding statesí budget difficulties. A number of states have moved to cut reimbursement rates.  Some that had initially moved to cut provider reimbursements have since restored those cuts to a flat line. Two states, Illinois and Kentucky, are among those states. Kentucky providers had faced a 7% cut; that has since been restored. Illinois initially faced a 50% cut; but, thanks to a federal consent decree, the court subsequently ordered that Illinois must maintain their financial commitment to services in the child welfare system at the previous rate.

NOSAC represents more than 1500 provider agencies in over 30 states nationally.  It provides strong support to State Associations that represent providers of child welfare services. 

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Daily Update, an email newsletter for the members of the
Georgia Association of Homes
and Services for Children

http://www.gahsc.org
Normer Adams, Editor

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_____________________________________
Welfare Watch, an email newsletter of the
Georgia Association of Homes
and Services for Children
as a public service.
http://www.gahsc.org
                           
Normer Adams, Editor
___________________________________

GAHSC Membership Application  
GAHSC Membership List
GAHSC Member Calendar of Events