UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS URBANA-CHAMPAIGN

Children's Mental Health Systems of Care

Led by principal investigator Dr. Tamara Fuller, the Children and Family Research Center is conducting a comprehensive evaluation of the implementation and impact of Children’s Mental Health Initiative (CMHI) grants.

Children and youth with or at risk for mental health disorders and their families often need supports and services from multiple child- and family-serving agencies in their communities, but the help they receive is often fragmented and uncoordinated. Coordinated systems of care (SOC) provide a spectrum of effective, flexible, community-based, and culturally appropriate services to children and their families. Youth, their caregivers, and other supportive persons are full partners in all aspects of the planning and delivery of services, which are provided in the least restrictive, most normative environment that are clinically appropriate.

The Illinois Children’s Healthcare Foundation (ILCHF) is providing funding for ten communities in Illinois to develop or expand their children’s mental health systems of care under their ongoing Children’s Mental Health Initiative (CMHI) grants. Led by principal investigator Dr. Tamara Fuller, the Children and Family Research Center is conducting a comprehensive evaluation of the implementation and impact of these children’s mental health initiatives. The evaluation includes several components, including biennial site visits in each of the ten sites to collect data on the progress of the implementation of the systems of care; a system of care fidelity assessment that examines whether services are provided in accordance with SOC values and principles; descriptive studies of the children and families who are receiving services in each community, the services that are provided to them, and the costs associated with these services; and a longitudinal outcome study will assess change over time among the children, youth, and families participating in systems of care services in the ten communities.

Video: CFRC's Dr. Ted Cross Talks With Dr. Amy Starin from the Illinois Children's Healthcare Foundation About the Children's Mental Health Initiative

Recorded on October 4th, 2021 via Zoom
Oct 2022 / Report / Children's Mental Health Systems of Care    
Tamara Fuller, Steve Tran, Yu-Ling Chiu, Kirsten Havig, and Cady Landa

This report presents the results of the 2022 annual stakeholder survey that was administered to system of care stakeholders in the five CMHI 3.0 communities. The stakeholder survey assesses the degree to which various implementation supports and activities have been implemented and fidelity to the systems of care principles in the service delivery system, including the extent to which services are individualized, family-driven, youth-guided, coordinated, culturally and linguistically competent, based on evidence-informed and promising practices, least restrictive, and comprehensive. In addition, the survey measures several system-level outcomes, including availability of specific services, coordination among various child- and family-serving systems (child welfare, education, public health, juvenile justice, primary health, substance abuse, and mental and behavioral health); and commitment to the SOC philosophy and approach.


Oct 2022 / Report / Children's Mental Health Systems of Care    
Tamara Fuller, Kirsten Havig, Cady Landa, Theodore Cross, and Yu-Ling Chiu

This report provides information from the second round of site visits that were conducted in each of the five CMHI 2.0 communities at the end of the second year of their implementation grants. During the site visits, qualitative data were collected through interviews and focus groups with project staff, service providers, parents, and youth who were involved in the implementation efforts in each community. The following topics were examined in the report:

  • Participants’ understandings of their sites’ major goals, objectives, and interventions for changing or improving the children’s mental health system of care
  • Progress made in implementing children’s mental health systems of care during the first two years of implementation
  • The implementation infrastructure and processes that guided and supported implementation, such as leadership, planning and decision-making, and communication within the implementation teams and to the wider community
  • The role of parents and youth in the implementation process
  • Barriers and facilitators of implementation


Oct 2022 / Report / Children's Mental Health Systems of Care    
Tamara Fuller, Steve Tran, Yu-Ling Chiu, and Kirsten Havig

This report presents the results of the 2022 annual stakeholder survey that was administered to system of care stakeholders in the five CMHI 2.0 communities. The stakeholder survey assesses the degree to which various implementation supports and activities have been implemented and fidelity to the systems of care principles in the service delivery system, including the extent to which services are individualized, family-driven, youth-guided, coordinated, culturally and linguistically competent, based on evidence-informed and promising practices, least restrictive, and comprehensive. In addition, the survey measures several system-level outcomes, including availability of specific services, coordination among various child- and family-serving systems (child welfare, education, public health, juvenile justice, primary health, substance abuse, and mental and behavioral health); and commitment to the SOC philosophy and approach.


Sep 2021 / Report / Children's Mental Health Systems of Care    
Tamara Fuller, Theodore Cross, Yu-ling Chiu, Cady Landa, Kirsten Havig, and Steven Tran

This report presents the results of the first annual stakeholder survey that was administered to system of care stakeholders in the five CMHI 3.0 communities. The stakeholder survey is an important component of the evaluation of the Children's Mental Health Initiative that assesses the degree to which various implementation supports and activities have been implemented, such as a strategic plan that guides implementation and a steering committee that meets frequently. The survey also assesses fidelity to the systems of care principles in the service delivery system, including the extent to which services are individualized, family-driven, youth-guided, coordinated, culturally and linguistically competent, based on evidence-informed and promising practices, least restrictive, and comprehensive. Finally, the Stakeholder Survey includes sections that measure several system-level outcomes, including availability of specific home- and community-based services, residential and non-residential treatment services, and evidence-based mental health interventions; coordination among various child- and family-serving systems (child welfare, education, public health, juvenile justice, primary health, substance abuse, and mental and behavioral health); and commitment to the SOC philosophy and approach.


Jun 2021 / Report / Children's Mental Health Systems of Care    
Tamara Fuller, Steve Tran, Theodore Cross, Yu-ling Chiu, Cady Landa, and Kirsten Havig

This report presents the results of the 2021 annual stakeholder survey that was administered to system of care stakeholders in the five CMHI 2.0 communities. The stakeholder survey is an important component of the evaluation of the Children's Mental Health Initiative that assesses the degree to which various implementation supports and activities have been implemented, such as a strategic plan that guides implementation and a steering committee that meets frequently. The survey also assesses fidelity to the systems of care principles in the service delivery system, including the extent to which services are individualized, family-driven, youth-guided, coordinated, culturally and linguistically competent, based on evidence-informed and promising practices, least restrictive, and comprehensive. Finally, the Stakeholder Survey includes sections that measure several system-level outcomes, including availability of specific home- and community-based services, residential and non-residential treatment services, and evidence-based mental health interventions; coordination among various child- and family-serving systems (child welfare, education, public health, juvenile justice, primary health, substance abuse, and mental and behavioral health); and commitment to the SOC philosophy and approach.


Mar 2020 / Report / Children's Mental Health Systems of Care    
Michael Braun, Yu-ling Chiu, Theodore Cross, Tamara Fuller, and Steve Tran

This report provides information from the first round of site visits conducted in each of the five sites at the end of the 13-month planning period. During the planning period, sites were expected to “build the local infrastructure necessary to fully implement their CMHI 2.0 plan.” They were expected to develop an organizational structure and project leadership, and engage a community planning team in which 25% of its members were self-identified consumers (parents and youth). They also needed to conduct an analysis of the community’s strengths (assets) and weaknesses (gaps in services), and of the current system of care in the community. Finally, they had to develop a strategic plan to implement a CMHI 2.0 project that is consistent with CASSP principles and address each of the 11 outcome goals. Given these expectations for the planning period, this report provides information to address the following topics and questions:

  1. What is the current status of the system of care in each community?
  2. Describe the leadership that was in place during the planning period. What activities or strategies did the leaders use? Did the participants feel that the leadership was effective?
  3. Describe the community planning team. How were people recruited? How did meetings work? What was accomplished during them? What role did the community planning team have in developing the strategic plan?
  4. What role did parents and youth play on the community planning team? How were parents and youth recruited? How were they kept engaged? How was their participation shaped?
  5. How were activities in the strategic plan selected? What did this process look like? Did the community planning team or executive team play a role in this?
  6. What are the next steps for implementing systems of care in the sites? Are they ready to begin implementing now that the funding has arrived, or is there more planning to do?