An Opportunity for Young Children and Families
President Biden calls for a major expansion of access to early childhood experts within community health centers and other primary care settings, as detailed on the Biden campaign’s education policy page (emphasis added):
“Provide early childhood development support to families where they are most likely to access it – the pediatrician’s office. For many families with young children, the pediatrician’s office is the one place where they interact with service providers before their child enters school. President Biden will provide funds to ensure that there is an early childhood development expert in every community health center. He will also provide grants to help cities place early childhood development experts in other pediatrician offices with a high percentage of Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program patients.”
What is the Primary Care Child Development Initiative?
As of February 2022, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) announced a grant forecast, Transforming Pediatrics for Early Childhood (TPEC). Current and prospective HealthySteps sites are encouraged to apply.
To deliver on this campaign promise, we recommend and support the creation of a new Primary Care Child Development Initiative (PCCDI) as a signature proposal to be rolled out by the Biden-Harris Administration and included in President Biden’s first Budget Proposal for Fiscal Year 2022.
Based on President Biden’s vision of expanding access to early childhood development specialists through community health centers, we believe is in the best position to oversee and administer this new initiative.
Within HRSA, we envision a partnership between the Bureau of Primary Health Care, which oversees the Health Center program and the Maternal and Child Health Bureau, which has a long-standing commitment to improving the health and well-being of young children and their families.
How can you get involved?
We welcome collaborators who share in our mission to give all babies and toddlers a strong start in life. To learn how you can join our PCCDI efforts, contact HealthySteps Director of Policy Johanna Lister at [email protected].