Skip to main content
Friday Five: Addressing the social and emotional needs of children can have lifetime effects

In this week’s Friday Five, MAXIMUS is reading about how Medicaid and CHIP help pediatric providers address children’s needs, states’ attempts to connect recently released inmates with substance abuse treatment, community intervention to increase involvement in the child support process, online tools to streamline veterans disability claims, and how the ACA has impacted individuals with disabilities.

1. Report: CHIP, Medicaid integral in fostering social, emotional well-being of children 

Nearly half of children under three in the U.S. receive healthcare via Medicaid or CHIP (Children’s Health Insurance Program). They are also more likely to deal with depression, low birth weight, and food or housing insecurity. According to a Fierce Healthcare report, having continuous healthcare coverage from birth helps pediatric providers better address children’s social and emotional needs. Addressing pediatric needs early can result in a lifetime of stronger academic performance, employment, and better physical and mental health. 

2. How connecting justice-involved individuals to Medicaid can help address the opioid epidemic 

Individuals leaving incarceration are at higher risk of overdose or death due to substance abuse. This Kaiser Family Foundation issue brief discusses approaches states are taking to enroll individuals returning to the community in Medicaid and increasing access to medication assisted therapy. Challenges remain, but in the long term, the increased assistance with re-entry is expected to improve health and reduce recidivism rates.

3. Franklin County Child Support Enforcement Agency wants to emphasize support 

Franklin County, Ohio has launched a pilot program to assist first-time fathers and encourage them to be involved with the child support process. Beginning with the first visit to establish paternity, the county is offering enrollment in the pilot. The Columbus Dispatch notes the program offers employment counseling, basic financial literacy, parenting classes, and more. 

4. Taking the ‘work’ out of disability claims paperwork

This spring, the Department of Veterans Affairs launched their Disability Compensation Claims Tool, designed to help veterans fill out online forms. Federal Times reports the tool pre-populates forms with individuals’ information the VA already possesses, removes confusing language, and automates certain processes. The tool, designed in partnership with the U.S. Digital Service, is showing signs it can decrease the amount of time it takes veterans to submit an application and receive claims.

5. How people with disabilities benefited from the ACA 

New research published in the American Journal of Public Health shows that the Affordable Care Act improved healthcare access for individuals with certain disabilities, but not for those with severe mental health conditions. Many people with disabilities were able to access health insurance, saw reductions in delayed or foregone care, and were more likely to have a regular healthcare provider. Journalist’s Resource provides these insights and more from the study’s lead author.