Infant/Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation
Infant/Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC) is an effective intervention strategy for building parent/caregiver capacity to support young children’s social and emotional development and to address challenging behaviors in the context of relationships across multiple settings and systems of care. As a result, more and more states and communities are investing in IECMHC.
As Wisconsin embraces IECMHC as a valuable early prevention and intervention strategy, it’s important to have a shared understanding of best practice guidelines regarding what IECMHC is, how it’s delivered and who should be providing it. The following guidelines were developed by a group of Wisconsin experts, chaired by the Wisconsin Alliance for Infant Mental Health, to ensure that high standards of practice are consistently maintained throughout the state.
Infant/Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation in Wisconsin Best Practice Guidelines
Webinar Series: Reducing Toxic Stress and Increasing Resilience in Wisconsin’s Young Children
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) Curriculum
Caring for Children Who Have Experienced Trauma (2010) was originally a workshop designed for resource parents. Over the past five years many states, including Wisconsin, have opened up these workshops to include birth parents, as well as professionals.
ECCS, in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families Trauma Project and the Wisconsin Alliance for Infant Mental Health, has modified this curriculum to focus on the impact of toxic stress & trauma in children birth through 5 years of age:
Caring for Children who have Experienced Trauma: A Workshop for Caregivers of Children Ages 0-5
The complete original curriculum is available on the NCTSN Learning Center, as part of an online community for facilitators. (Note: you must create an account on the Learning Center in order to join the community.)
Wisconsin Child Psychiatry Consulation Program: A Resource for Your Child's Primary Care Provider
The Child Psychiatry Consultation Program offers psychiatric consultation, education, and resource coordination to primary care providers in the Northern Region of Wisconsin and Milwaukee County who care for children with mental health concerns. If you are a parent of a child with behavioral health concerns, you may want to ask if your child’s primary care provider is aware of this resource.
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Neurorelational Framework (NRF)
It is not uncommon for infants and families entering service delivery systems to face fragmented and isolated silos of service. There are three Wisconsin communities that have adopted Neurorelational Framework (NRF) to coordinate care via a common language and shared approach to assessment and intervention. The shared approach promotes healthy brain architecture during the early years by reducing toxic stress patterns and improving the quality of engagement between infants and caregivers. NRF translates three core concepts of brain development into clinical steps for assessment and intervention:
adaptive versus toxic stress
age appropriate versus low levels of engagement
age appropriate developmental and functional brain capacities versus delays
The goal is to create communities that coordinate care using NRF’s three steps. These communities intentionally invite practitioners from five service delivery sectors: medical, developmental disabilities, mental health, early care and education, and child welfare. As cross-sectored teams are trained simultaneously, teams begin to shift from siloed to coordinated care, and from multi-disciplinary to inter- and trans-disciplinary teams.
Two of the three Wisconsin communities that have adopted NRF are ECCS pilot communities! Both Kenosha County and Waupaca County participated in three days of training in March of 2015. As they are learning more about fidelity to the NRF model, these communities are working to infuse NRF principles into their daily work.
For more information about NRF please feel free to contact Dr. Connie Lillas, Director of the Interdisciplinary Training Institute, at email@example.com.
August 11, 2015
Infant and Early Childhood Action Day:
Moving Forward with Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation
April 17, 2015
Infant and Early Childhood Awareness & Action Day