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We announced today that we have won contracts with four states — Indiana, Michigan, North Dakota, and most recently New Hampshire — to provide guidance and support as they implement Qualified Residential Treatment Program (QRTP) assessments to meet new federal funding requirements established under the Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA).

As states move to meet the requirements by October 1, 2021, of the most significant legislation to impact the funding and delivery of child welfare services in more than a decade, they are turning to Maximus to help ensure that vulnerable children are placed in settings that can best meet their needs. 

Passed into law in 2018, the FFPSA fundamentally transforms the approach to child welfare by placing emphasis and funding on preventative services designed to keep children safely with their families rather than taking them out of the home. The legislation emphasizes placing children who need foster care into family-like settings. To encourage this, the FFPSA limits federal funding for congregate care settings. Federal funding for children in congregate care settings is provided for children in QRTPs that meet federal standards when an independent assessment has determined that child’s needs are most appropriately met in a QRTP. 

As a conflict-free assessment expert, Maximus brings a holistic approach to helping our state clients implement QRTP assessment projects on time and in compliance with all federal and state requirements. We provide our clients a high degree of stakeholder engagement, consultation, training, and clinical alignment to best practices that demonstrate consistency, while also offering continual enhancements shaped to the unique needs of each state and the youth they serve.

"Our work with child welfare agencies is focused on ensuring every child receives quality care services in the right environment that supports their emotional, physical, and behavioral health needs,” said Christa Ballew, Vice President of Clinical Services. “At Maximus, we are committed to helping states understand and implement the FFPSA/QRTP assessments within their unique program requirements and timelines, to maintain federal compliance, and improve processes and outcomes for children and families.”

Maximus has extensive experience providing best practice screenings, comprehensive assessments, and clinical reviews to optimize placement, supports, and services for children in states across the country. Maximus has worked with multiple states to adapt their level of care criteria specifically for FFPSA and the QRTP service settings, and successfully implemented their QRTP assessment operations. Each QRTP assessment is reviewed by a Maximus qualified licensed clinician to ensure all requirements are completed and individualized to each child’s unique circumstances.

Maximus is currently working with:

  • Indiana: Supporting the Indiana Department of Children’s Services to provide assessments and re-assessments for youth that may require services in a QRTP. Since starting in April 2021, Maximus has completed 82 assessments and anticipates accelerating to 500 per month by October 2021.
  • Michigan: Working with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to manage the state’s QRTP, including conducting assessments to determine the appropriate level of care for foster children. Maximus completed 144 assessments between February 2021 and April 2021.
  • North Dakota: Partnering with the North Dakota Department of Human Services, and Child and Family Services to build a successful QRTP from the ground up. Between October 2019 and April 2021, Maximus completed 536 assessments that led to 81 children being recommended for a family setting instead of unnecessarily entering congregate care.

“MDHHS is strongly committed to prevention work so that more children can remain with their families safely instead of being placed in foster care,” said Demetrius Starling, executive director of the department’s Children’s Services Agency. “We are relying on Maximus’ expertise to support us in achieving this important goal.”

“Indiana is dedicated to serving youth in innovative, trauma-informed community settings to ensure they receive the care they need to thrive,” said David Reed, Deputy Director, Child Welfare Services of Indiana Department of Child Services. “Our work with Maximus is vital to expanding Indiana DCS’s ability to provide conflict-free assessments to children and adolescents receiving services through the child welfare and juvenile justice systems.”   

To learn more about how Maximus has been helping states implement FFPSA and meet QRTP requirements, please visit