Exploring a Model for Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation in Early Childhood Home Visiting

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Infant Mental Health Journal

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Home-visiting programs have experienced a rapid expansion as a strategy for pro-viding support to vulnerable families with young children. As the evidence basefor home-visiting effectiveness has grown, the need for providing additional sup-port to home visitors in addressing attachment issues and working with families withmental health concerns has become clear. One model for providing this support isInfant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC). This study con-tributes to the nascent evidence base for mental health consultation in home-visitingprograms, and describes the results from a pilot study of a model that incorpo-rates another evidence-based approach to early childhood mental health, Early Child-hood Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (ECPBIS) as a framework for con-sultation. We present data collected in a pilot project implementing an IECMHC–ECPBIS model within a Healthy Families America home-visiting program, includ-ing a description of the approach and home-visiting staff outcomes over a 24-monthperiod. Home visitors reported significant increases in knowledge of children’s men-tal health, knowledge of adult mental health, confidence in involving parents as part-ners, and program leadership around addressing early childhood mental health issues.Program and staff benefits suggest promise for this enhanced home-visiting programmodel.


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