Family Voices of California
June 22, 2018



Policy Updates

National and statewide health policies affecting children and youth with special health care needs


  • Immigration: On Wednesday the president signed an executive order to end the separation of families at the border. 
  • Budget: A U.S. Senate vote on a rescissions bill failed, meaning cuts to the CHIP contingency fund are unlikely.
  • Affordable Care Act (ACA): There is a renewed effort to repeal the ACA and replace it with block grants, eliminating the Medicaid expansion and access to subsidies in ACA exchanges. The proposal is similar to last year's failed Graham-Cassidy bill. Review the proposal
  • Behavioral Health: More than 50 statewide organizations joined together to launch Behavioral Health Action, a coalition created to, "...innovate by thinking about mental health differently to come up with new kinds of solutions." Read more

  • California Children's Services (CCS): The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) will begin transitioning CCS to the Whole Child Model (WCM) in in July. This shift will integrate specialty care with Medi-Cal managed care for most children currently receiving CCS services. Notices about the transition will be mailed to affected families. Local health plans are seeking applicants for CCS Family Advisory Committees. Check your child's health plan Website for information. Learn more

    Sign up for regular updates from the Department of Health Care Services at

  • State Budget: More than a dozen California organizations serving individuals with developmental disabilities sent a joint letter to Gov. Jerry Brown and members of the legislature, criticizing a failure to fund restoration of services previously cut, despite an anticipated budget surplus. Read the letter and review the state budget 


Stakeholder Meetings
A call in option is available for most meetings
  • Support for Families of Children with Disabilities/and Family Voices of California are seeking an Early Start Proejct Director, Family Engagement Manager, and an Outreach Education Project Manager. Learn more

  • The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Los Angeles is seeking a Development Coordinator. Learn more
Research Studies
  • Family Voices is seeking young adults with disabilities and/or complex medical needs for a focus group. Participants will receive a $100 stipend. Contact

  • Share your experience with accessing Medi-Cal Behavioral Health Treatment for autism. Participants may receive pro-bono assistance with accessing an autism evaluation through Medi-Cal. Take the survey


A full library of Webinars is available in the FVCA Webinar Archive
  • Addressing California’s Public Health Challenges: The Key Policies for Consideration
    Monday, June 25, 2018
    Learn more and register

  • A Conversation on Models of Care Delivery for Children with Medical Complexity
    Thursday, June 28, 2018
    Learn more and register

Family Voices of California Presents
  • Cannabidiol (CBD) Use in Pediatric Treatment-Resistant Epilepsy
    Thursday, July 19, 2018
    Learn more and register


Parents and organizations who are making a difference for children and youth with special health care needs

The Mental Health Journey of a Mother and Daughter

Featuring Project Leadership graduate Olga Maldonado
Mental health disorders affect as many as 1 in 5 U.S. children each year. The vast majority of mental health problems begin in adolescence, with depression being the most common. Many young people who need mental health treatment do not receive it. Sadly, even if mental health problems are identified, children often face challenges with stigma.

When Magaly was 11, her mother found suicide plans on her phone. Six years later, they continue to navigate the challenges of Magaly’s diagnosis of depression and psychosis. Their journey touches upon the importance of early identification, access to care and the struggles for support. Read their story
CANDLE Lights the Way for Improved Hospital Discharge Care
FFVCA will represent the interests of families on an Advisory Committee for the California-based Nurse-led Discharge Learning (CANDLE) Collaborative, an 18-month initiative working to advance systems-level changes in discharge care for hospitalized children with complex health care needs. Led by the Institute for Nursing and Interprofessional Research (INIR) at Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA), the CANDLE collaborative includes nurse leaders from children's hospitals in California and across the U.S. who develop and implement interventions designed to improve patient and family outcomes through intensive interdisciplinary collaboration.  
New Grants Target Quality Standards, Transition, Complex Care
The Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health announced new grants aimed at improving the system of care for children with special health care needs. Included are grants to assure quality standards, address transition to adult health care, intensive care management, complex care management and using Medicaid waivers to fund home and community-based care.


Reports, publications, and stories
Learn more about FVCA and the Project Leadership Parent Training Program
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