Fostering Health Program
Fostering Health Program at Hasbro Children's Hospital
When a child, whether a newborn or a teenager, who is in a foster care setting becomes sick or in need of medical attention, it can be a most vulnerable time. With their parent unable to care for them, the child’s temporary living situation may lack access to quality healthcare. That is when the Fostering Health Program, a component of the Hasbro Children’s Hospital Primary Care Clinic, can offer immediate, comprehensive care within a family-centered medical home. We deliver health with care, and when children in foster care need it most.
What Is a Medical Home?
A medical home is neither a house, an office, or a hospital. It is an approach to providing comprehensive primary care. It focuses on the patient, their family, and their community, and aims to improve outcomes related to health, relationships, education, and abilities. In a medical home, a primary care clinician and their multidisciplinary team work with the family/patient to make sure that the medical and non-medical needs of the patient are met.
The Fostering Health Program supports children ages newborn through 21 years old who are in a non-kinship or kinship out of home placement, adoptive, or reunified home, as well as children upon removal from home.
To establish care for a child in need of a primary care medical home, call 401-444-4471.
Providing a Critical Healthcare Need
In Rhode Island, there can be as many as 2,000 children in foster care at any given time. Many have difficulty accessing appropriate medical and behavioral healthcare. They may need increased medical and mental health care, and often face more behavioral, developmental, and educational challenges compared to their children their age.
The Fostering Health Program overcomes these barriers by helping Rhode Island children currently or previously in foster care. Children may be under the care of a relative or a non-kinship, congregate, adoptive care setting, or reunified with their birth family, yet without established pediatric primary care.
A Care Team for Every Child
Our integrated team of medical and mental health clinicians understands the barriers children in foster care face when seeking qualified healthcare. It truly “takes a village,” and ours is staffed with compassionate, caring, and well-trained pediatric psychologists, medical providers, and care coordinators who meet these challenges. Together, the Fostering Health team coordinates the full scope of attention to benefit the child.
Our Comprehensive Services
The Fostering Health Program provides a wide array of care to children from infancy through age 21. Our services include:
- Collection of medical records in one electronic health record.
- Well-childcare, urgent care sick appointments, and comprehensive medical evaluations at intervals recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics for youth entering or in foster care.
- Mental, behavioral, and developmental screening and assessments; bridge therapy.
- Referrals to medical subspecialists and recommendations for behavioral health resources including psychiatry.
- Communication with other members of care team.
- Care coordination, social work, screening and support for health-related social needs.
- Cedar Family Center-centered intensive case management and coordination.
- Collaboration with child welfare social workers, foster, and birth families.
- Education and support for everyone involved in the child’s care, including foster parents, biological parents, and school personnel.
- Interpreter services, clinicians versed in cultural humility.
- Collaboration with local partners that include: