Child Health

Health is the foundation of children’s growth and development. Undetected and untreated health and developmental issues can significantly impact children’s ability to learn and be successful in school. Too often, these issues are not detected early enough, resulting in serious and costly learning difficulties later on. Intervening as early as possible, and linking families to needed services, can help ensure that concerns do not escalate into life-altering conditions—dramatically improving overall positive outcomes for children and providing future cost savings for families and the community.

 

First 5 San Francisco, in partnership with the Department of Children, Youth, and Their Families, the San Francisco Human Services Agency, and the Department of Public Health, oversees a number of initiatives to improve coordination and increase early access to health and mental health services for children. In order to accomplish this, health and mental health initiatives are offered citywide, as well as integrated within core early learning and family support services.

Goals, Outcomes, and Strategies

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Goal

San Francisco establishes a system of universal early identification and intervention for children birth to five.

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Outcomes

  1. Families and providers know where to go for referrals and resources about developmental concerns and questions.
  2. All children are screened at regular intervals and assessed as needed.
  3. Developmental concerns and issues are identified and addressed prior to kindergarten.
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Strategies

  1. Partner with the Department of Public Health, San Francisco Unified School District, and other stakeholders to make early childhood developmental health screenings universal and to link families with support services.
  2. Strengthen and build linkages between the pediatric community, social services, and education systems to increase families’ access to and utilization of needed services.
  3. Develop model(s) to coordinate and integrate services and supports that improve child health and well-being in multiple settings where children and families are present.