October 27, 2015

New Grant Expands Reach of UCLA/J&J Health Care Institute to 60,000 Families

LOS ANGELES, (Oct. 27, 2015) UCLA/Johnson & Johnson Health Care Institute (HCI) received a $4.1 million grant that will enable it to expand its health literacy training program. HCI’s unique comprehensive approach to health empowerment strengthens management capacity in the agencies and empowers families with knowledge and skills to better manage their families’ health needs and create a healthy home environment.

The funding is part of a new five-year, $33.4 million grant from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to develop the National Center on Early Childhood Health and Wellness (NCECHW). The new center will be funded and jointly managed by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Office of Head Start and Office of Child Care in partnership with the Health Resource Services Administration/Maternal and Child Health Bureau/Division of Home Visiting and Early Childhood Systems. It will focus efforts on providing resources and support to early childhood education programs to promote the optimal health and well-being of pregnant women, infants, toddlers, preschoolers and their families, as well as program staff. NCECHW is part of the federal early childhood training and technical assistance (T/TA) system, designed to build capacity and create sustainable early childhood practices at the regional, state and local levels.
(https://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ecd/interagency-projects/ece-technical-assistance)

“We believe that school readiness begins with health,” says Ariella Herman, research director and principal investigator of HCI and long-time faculty member of UCLA Anderson School of Management. “When the kids are healthy, they are in school, they are learning more and are more productive.”

The additional funding will not only enable HCI to expand its reach in Head Start, but it will be able to promote its health literacy efforts to other low-income working families who receive financial assistance from the Office of Child Care. During the next five years HCI will provide additional training material on key topics of children’s health, including oral health, mental health and wellness and nutrition and obesity prevention, which will be useful in improving the overall health of families, their children and entire communities. These efforts extend HCI’s commitment to health promotion and prevention activities that began with its initial grant from the National Center on Health in 2011.

“The renewal of our grant with the Office of Head Start is gratifying, as it recognizes the work we have done during the past four years to increase our reach to 120,000 Head Start families, measure our impact, and build social capital through management training in the Head Start agencies so they can sustain the health promotion work indefinitely,” says Herman. “The potential to expand our reach to more families, deepen the management expertise in staff, and create a strong culture of health and prevention in Head Start and Child Care by intensifying health literacy activities only helps to further our mission. ”

“We are pleased that American Academy of Pediatrics has chosen to work with HCI for another five years”, says UCLA Anderson Associate Dean Alfred E. Osborne, Jr., founder and faculty director of the Harold and Pauline Price center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, which houses this one-of-a-kind program. “It is a testament to the impact and influence of Dr. Herman’s evidence based research and training methodologies on early childhood organizations, demonstrating how well- conceived interventions can reduce costs to the health care system and lead to healthier communities.

HCI is also part of a National Institutes of Health grant, partnering with the Albert Einstein College of Medicine to implement its health literacy management training methods to improve children’s sleep in Head Start. Healthy sleep has been found to be an important factor in improving children’s success in school, reducing behavior problems and learning challenges and preventing increased obesity rates.

About UCLA Health Care Institute

Established in 2001, the HCI has trained 120,000 families in 10 languages and in 50 states. Its training methodology is used by over 300 Head Start grantees nationwide. HCI’s methodology has been tested for over 15 years and has consistently delivered significant outcomes in improving knowledge, changing behavior, and reducing unnecessary utilization of health care services.

About UCLA Anderson School of Management

UCLA Anderson School of Management is among the leading business schools in the world, with faculty members globally renowned for their teaching excellence and research in advancing management thinking. Located in Los Angeles, gateway to the growing economies of Latin America and Asia and a city that personifies innovation in a diverse range of endeavors, UCLA Anderson's MBA, Fully Employed MBA, Executive MBA, Global Executive MBA for Asia Pacific, Global Executive MBA for the Americas, Master of Financial Engineering, doctoral and executive education programs embody the school's Think in the Next ethos. Annually, some 1,800 students are trained to be global leaders seeking the business models and community solutions of tomorrow.

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UCLA Anderson Office of Media Relations, (310) 206-7707, Media.relations@anderson.ucla.edu

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