HHS Releases Funding Announcement for Home Visiting Program
On June 10, 2010, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a funding opportunity announcement for the early childhood home visiting program included as part of health care reform. The announcement provides the timeline for additional information to be released over the summer that will be critical to states as they apply for and implement the new program.
For more information on the program, see this Detailed Summary of Home Visitation Program in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Importantly, the new announcement makes clear that the home visiting program is a formula-based grant program and that all states with approved applications will receive funds. Appendix B provides a breakdown of the approximate funding level for each state.
States should note that though funds are made available to all states, they still must complete the required needs assessment and the initial application is due July 9, 2010. Additionally their final applications, which will be due in early FY 2011, will have to be approved by the Secretary as meeting the criteria of effectiveness for home visiting models.
June 10, 2010
Initial Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) issued
This FOA includes the following:
- A summary of data elements that must be collected as part of the required needs assessment
- Instructions for providing an appraisal of the data available in the state to assess communities at risk, the quality and capacity of existing home visiting services, any anticipated problems or obstacles in obtaining the necessary information and anticipated needs for technical assistance
- Information required for a successful application for funding
The application must:
- Demonstrate that the entity or entities designated by the Governor have strong organizational capacity to implement an evidence-based home visiting program.
- Include letters of support from the director of the state's Title V agency, director of the state's agency for Title II of CAPTA, director of the state's Single State Agency for Substance Abuse Services, and the director of the state's Head Start State Collaboration Office.
- Be submitted electronically in its entirety as described in the June 10, 2010 FOA.
States are also asked to, as part of their application, include a description of their technical assistance needs related to completing the required needs assessment.
Sometime between June 10th and Mid-August
Regulations on criteria for evidence of effectiveness issued
The June 10, 2010 FOA notes that proposed regulations on the criteria for evidence of effectiveness are forthcoming and will be based on "an exhaustive study of research evidence related to home visiting programs and will provide a used-friendly source of information for States about different models and the evidence of effectiveness associated with them." Because the evidence-based criteria will be included in the final FOA in mid-August, it is assumed that the proposed regulations will be issued sometime between now and mid-August.
Late June 2010
Full Needs Assessment FOA published
The second FOA will provide full specifications for conducting the required needs assessment including templates and instructions for reporting on:
- Communities at risk
- The quality and capacity of existing programs of home visiting
- The state's capacity for providing substance abuse treatment and counseling services
FY 2010 funds awarded to states
The June 10th FOA provides, in appendix B, the approximate funding levels per states. These levels are based on the following formula:
- An equal base allocation of $500,000 per state
- An amount equal to the funds, if any, currently provided to a state or entity within the state under the Supporting Evidence Based Home Visiting (EBHV) Program administered by the Children's Bureau
- An amount based on the number of children in families at or below 100% of FPL as compared to the number of such children nationally
These funds will become available when a state submits an approvable application. However, all but $500,000 of a state's allocation will be restricted until the state submits an needs assessment and an updated state plan for the home visiting program which are approved by the Secretary.
Any unrestricted funds may be used for planning or implementation activities toward the establishment of the program.
FOA published for updated state plan
This FOA will include the criteria for evidence of effectiveness as well as instructions for submitting an updated state plan based on the results of the needs assessment. Specifically the FOA will include:
- Requirements for reporting on the state's plan for addressing service gaps identified in the needs assessment
- Criteria for evidence of effectiveness of home visiting models that qualify for funding under the program and what states must provide to demonstrate that they will be operating qualifying models.
September 1, 2010
State needs assessment due
Based on the detail and specifications provided in the late June FOA, needs assessments must:
- Indentify communities at risk
- Identify the quality and capacity of existing home visiting programs or initiatives in the state
- Discuss the state's capacity for providing substance abuse treatment and counseling services to individuals and families in needs of such treatment or services
Early Fiscal Year 2011
Updated state plan due
The updated state plan must include:
- The state's plan for addressing service gaps identified in the needs assessment
- The state's proposal for implementing a model or models of home visiting that meet the criteria for evidence of effectiveness included in the Mid-August FOA
The needs assessment and updated state plan must be approved by the Secretary.