June 30, 2022

COVID-19 Resources

CDC Recommends COVID-19 Vaccines for Young Children

CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, M.D., M.P.H., endorsed the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) recommendation that all children 6 months through 5 years of age should receive a COVID-19 vaccine. This expands eligibility for vaccination to nearly 20 million additional children and means that all Americans ages 6 months and older are now eligible for vaccination.

Parents and caregivers can now get their children 6 months through 5 years of age vaccinated with the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines to better protect them from COVID-19. All children, including children who have already had COVID-19, should get vaccinated. [continue reading]

Recent CDC News 

AMCHP COVID-19 Resources and Vaccination Pages 

AMCHP is committed to working alongside our federal agency and organizational partners to gather available information, resources, and guidance specific to our MCH population during the COVID-19 pandemic. These resources are on our website for your convenience and are updated regularly as untapped resources become available. Find out more about vaccinating MCH populations to stay up to date on well care during the pandemic here.


AMCHP Announcements

Never miss our updates! Sign up for our newsletters here, and follow us on Twitter (@DC_AMCHP), LinkedIn (Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs), Facebook (AMCHPofficial), and Instagram (@DC_AMCHP).

AMCHP Appoints new President of the Board: Belinda Pettiford, Formerly Board President-Elect

On Monday, June 27, AMCHP announced that Belinda Pettiford had been named President of its Board of Directors. Pettiford succeeds Dr. Manda Hall, who became Past-President after serving as President of the board for the past year.

“I feel very privileged to take on this role to continue strengthening AMCHP’s position as a leader in maternal and child health in our country,” said Pettiford. “I look forward to leveraging my background and experience in maternal and child health, my focus on addressing equity and the challenges of communities of color, and my involvement with national boards and strategic planning.”

Pettiford, who has worked for over 30 years in public health, serves as Chief of the Women, Infant, and Community Wellness Section at the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. In this capacity, she oversees the state’s maternal health, family planning, preconception health, teen pregnancy prevention, sickle cell, and numerous programs focused on equity in birth outcomes. Pettiford co-chairs the Perinatal Health Committees of the North Carolina Child Fatality Task Force (CFTF), serves on the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Infant and Maternal Mortality (SACIMM) and is a board member with the National Healthy Start Association.

“Belinda’s long history of leadership for national, state, and local efforts on maternal and child health, coupled with her focus on health equity and her experience serving AMCHP’s board as well as our Workforce Development Committee, makes her an ideal person for this role. I look forward to partnering with Belinda to continue to work towards our mission of protecting and promoting the health and well-being of women, children, youth, families, and communities,” said Terrance E. Moore, Chief Executive Officer of AMCHP. [continue reading]

Statement by AMCHP CEO Terrance E. Moore on the Final Majority Decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization

On Friday, June 24, AMCHP’s CEO Terrance E. Moore, issued the following statement in response to the final majority decision by the Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization:

“Today’s news confirms our worst fears, as outlined in my statement last month, that the U.S. Supreme Court’s final majority opinion in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization would effectively overturn Roe v. Wade. In doing so, the Dobbs decision reverses nearly 50 years of legal precedent and issues a direct assault on reproductive justice, the public’s health, and human rights.”

“As the national professional association representing state public health professionals dedicated to improving maternal and child health in the United States, AMCHP cannot be silent about the known consequences of curtailing access to the full spectrum of reproductive health care, including abortion care, on the health and well-being of our nation’s women, children, and families. In order to live up to our organizational commitments to ensure racial equity and health equity and undo systemic racism, we must clearly articulate the ways in which populations already disproportionately impacted by poor maternal health outcomes in the U.S. will experience the most harm as a result of the Dobbs decision.”

“Access to abortion care is inextricably linked to maternal health. The United States is already failing to adequately support healthy births and healthy families. We have the highest rate of maternal deaths among industrialized countries. Poor maternal health outcomes disproportionately impact women and birthing people with low incomes, women and birthing people of color, and women and birthing people in rural communities. The Dobbs decision will exacerbate existing maternal health disparities and counteract the potential of recent investments made by the federal government and state governments to improve maternal health.” [continue reading]

Apply for AMCHP’s Leadership Lab!

AMCHP believes that achieving our vision of a skilled, flexible, and diverse workforce starts with investing in the leadership journeys of individuals serving in many different roles and settings. Leadership Lab is a unique opportunity for those affiliated or working with jurisdictional Title V programs (staff, consultants, volunteers) to accelerate their professional development in a way that is framed by the MCH Leadership Competencies and guided by adult learning principles.

Comprised of five unique cohorts that run concurrently from August 2022 through April 2023, Leadership Lab exposes participants to information and resources that are relevant for their current and future roles; encourages the development and continuous revision of individualized leadership plans; challenges participants through collaborative activities and thoughtful discussions; cultivates a peer learning and accountability network; and provides participants with ongoing support from a matched mentor and AMCHP staff.

The Leadership Lab cohorts are:

  • New Director Leaders Cohort (NDLC) – for new jurisdictional MCH/CYSHCN Directors.
  • Next Generation MCH Leaders Cohort (NextGen) – for mid-career MCH/CYSHCN professionals managing programs or domain-specific portfolios.
  • Family Leaders Cohort (FLC) – for family members of a child or youth served by a Title V program and who have demonstrated some degree of community leadership.
  • MCH Epi Peer-to-Peer Cohort (MCH Epi P2P) – for epidemiologists and data specialists working in or in partnership with a jurisdictional Title V program.
  • Adolescent Health Leaders Cohort (AHLC) – for Adolescent Health Coordinators and other professionals seeking to build capacity to address adolescent health priorities.

Are you or someone on your staff looking for a great professional development opportunity? Check out the Leadership Lab page of our shiny, new website for more information – including a description of core program components and an application link. The deadline to apply is Friday, July 15 and decisions will be communicated to applicants by Friday, August 5.

New MCH Bridges Podcast Episode!

Our newest MCH Bridges episode is now live! Episode 6 – “The Kids Are Not Okay: Climate Change, Environmental Injustice, and What MCH & Youth Advocates Can Do.”

In this episode, we talk with Rhea Goswami, co-founder of the Environmental Justice Coalition, about why youth engagement is so important, especially when working to address climate change and climate injustices and how environmental health impacts MCH. We also chat with one of Rhea’s mentors, Dr. Megan Latshaw in the Department of Environmental Health & Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, about networking, the connection between environmental health and MCH, environmental justice, and what MCH professionals can do.

Share with your peers and listen to this and other episodes on www.mchbridges.org, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or Overcast.

Why tune in to MCH Bridges?

MCH Bridges is designed to help our listeners create new connections to MCH leaders, organizations, and ideas. We aim to inspire and guide listeners towards actions that will improve the systems that impact MCH populations.

Who should listen to MCH Bridges?

MCH Bridges is designed for Title V MCH & CYSHCN leaders, state and jurisdictional health department staff, individuals with lived experience and their families, MCH faculty and students, public health professionals, and others wanting to learn more about supporting MCH populations and equitable systems of care.

We’d like to hear from you! Complete this short survey to share input and let us know who or what you’d like to hear about on future episodes. If you have any questions or suggestions about the podcast, please contact Maura Leahy (mleahy@amchp.org).

The 2021 AMCHP Member Assessment is Now Available!

The 2021 AMCHP Member Assessment is now available!

Every year, we administer a member assessment to learn more about you, our valued members. We gather your input on our services and products and how we can improve the benefits you receive through our membership. This assessment also offers crucial insights that our team uses during our strategic planning process.

In 2021, we learned from members of AMCHP about their overall membership experience and three top system-level priorities: workforce retention, equity, and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Check out the results at this link!

Finally, as we continue to expand and improve efforts to serve the maternal and child health community, we always strive to put our members’ voices first. We look forward to hearing from you this year!

To download the full 2021 AMCHP Member Assessment, please visit this link.

AMCHP Announces 2022 Board of Directors Elections Results

AMCHP announced that its Board of Directors recently elected a new slate of officers and welcomed two new members. Elected in May, these board members began serving on May 18, 2022, with the results announced at the AMCHP Annual Business Meeting held the same day.

Re-elections, transitions, and new appointments to the board include Lisa A. Asare (President-Elect), Rachel Hutson (Secretary), Marcus Johnson-Miller (Treasurer), Dr. Tobi Adeyeye Amosun (Director-at-Large), Deborah Garneau (Region I Director), Dr. Janis Gonzales (Region IV Director), and Vickie Ives (Region IX Director).

Read the full press release at this link.

Recent AMCHP Announcements 


AMCHP Annual Conference

Sharing Your Why Testimonials

Thank you for joining us at the AMCHP 2022 Annual Conference and for participating in our Sharing Your Why plenary session, where WHY was front and center.

Check out our updated webpage to get inspired by our maternal and child health community through their stories! Access their testimonies to learn why they feel passionate about their work, what motivates them, why things need to change to create more equitable opportunities for the maternal and child health population, and where their efforts fit into that change.

Post-Conference Reminders

You still have access to ALL conference content!

Want to revisit your favorite session or engage with the content you might have missed live? For a full year, all registered participants will have access to all the on-demand content, live plenary sessions, workshops, and more! Visit the conference website, log in with your access code, and continue to be inspired by all the wonderful speakers and participants this year on your own time.

Save the Date for AMCHP 2023!

Are you feeling revitalized by the powerful content of this year’s conference? SAVE THE DATE for next year’s in-person conference that will take place May 7-9, 2023, in New Orleans, Louisiana. We are so excited to be able to offer an in-person experience after two years of wonderful, virtual conferences!

Interested in receiving all the details about the AMCHP 2023 Annual Conference? Subscribe to our email list at this link!

Annual Conference Approved for Continuing Education 

As of May 4, 2022, the AMCHP 2022 Annual Conference meets Accreditation and CDC’S Quality Training Standards. Please click this link for more information.


AMCHP Events & Webinars

Listening Session for MCH Stakeholders: White House’s Strategy on Hunger, Nutrition and Health

AMCHP is partnering with the Association of State Public Health Nutritionists (ASPHN) to host a listening session on July 7, 2022. Join us to share your thoughts, ideas, and suggestions to inform the Biden-Harris Administration’s National Strategy to address hunger, nutrition, and health. We encourage you to share this opportunity with your partners and the families that you serve. AMCHP and ASPHN staff will synthesize the input from this listening session to share with the White House for their consideration as they develop their strategy, which will be announced in September 2022. Register for the listening session at https://bit.ly/MCHListeningSession.

For more information about the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health, please visit this link.

New E-Learning from AMCHP Staff!

Two AMCHP staff, Maura Leahy and Laura Powis, recently completed the CDC E-Learning Institute Fellowship. As a part of this six-month fellowship, Maura and Laura each created 20-minute quick learns using best practices in e-learning, adult learning theory, and instructional design, and these are available to you! You’ll just need a free CDC TRAIN account to access them.

Maura’s course, How to Plan an Accessible Virtual Event, can be accessed at this link. For questions, please email Maura at mleahy@amchp.org.

Laura’s course, Shifting Power in Practice: Strategies for Centering People with Lived Experience When Making Evidence-Based Decisions, can be accessed at this link. For questions, please email Laura at lpowis@amchp.org.


AMCHP Mental Health Corner

Mental health is an important component of well-being for MCH populations. To recognize its importance, we will use this space to highlight resources for MCH professionals to support their own mental health, as well as the mental health of those they serve. Read more about AMCHP’s organizational work on mental health and substance use here.

July is Minority Mental Health Awareness Month. This observance uplifts the mental and emotional health and wellbeing of BIPOC populations and the challenges they face in obtaining mental health support and resources. Black Maternal Mental Health Week, led by the Shades of Blue Project, also takes place in July. Black women are twice as likely to experience maternal mental health conditions but half as likely to receive treatment as white women. During July, AMCHP will share tweets highlighting resources and valuable information for Minority Mental Health Awareness and Black Maternal Mental Health Week.

Interested in receiving more information on what’s happening related to mental health/substance use and MCH?Sign-up for the PRISM Digest, our monthly mental health/substance use newsletter, by emailingjsimon@amchp.organd check out the#AMCHPMentalHealthhashtag on Twitter. Have questions or want to learn more? Contact the mental health team atmentalhealth@amchp.org.

New post alert! #ScreenToInterveneForAYAs Blog Features a Conversation with Advocates on Fostering Environments that are Supportive of LGBTQ+ Mental Health

AMCHP’s Youth Voice Amplified committee member Gabrielle Smith recently spoke with Damien Lopez and Jahmila Smith, staff at Garden State Equality. Their conversation focused on how MCH professionals can support the transformation of spaces like schools, health care offices, and communities to be more inclusive of LGBTQ+ youth and their specific mental health needs. Read the post at this link!

Garden State Equality is a New Jersey-based organization that works to provide quality, innovative community programs, educate and train service providers, and pass pro-equality policies to protect and meet the needs of LGBTQ New Jerseyans.

If you would like to receive an e-mail notification when a new blog post is available for viewing, please sign up here.


AMCHP National Policy Calls

AMCHP Policy and Partnerships Town Halls

Thank you to those of you who joined us for our June AMCHP Policy and Partnerships Town Hall. Watch the full recording:

The next Town Hall will be on Thursday, July 14, from 2:00 – 3:00 PM EDT. We invite you to register for that and future Town Halls at this link.


Legislation & Policy

Explore our Maternal Health Bill Tracker for more information about pending federal legislation to improve maternal health.

Bipartisan Bill to Extend School Meal Waivers Signed into Law

Ahead of a June 30 expiration deadline, President Biden signed a law to extend school meal waivers under the National School Lunch Program originally enacted at the start of the pandemic in 2020. The bipartisan Keep Kids Fed Act of 2022 fully extends all waivers through the summer to allow for meal deliveries and grab-and-go options for students, as well as extends supply chain flexibilities and the higher pandemic-level federal reimbursement rates for school meals through the next school year. However, the Act does not continue flexibilities to suspend income eligibility requirements resulting in automatic free lunches, meaning families will need to resume reduced-price meal applications for free or reduced options. Read the full bill text here and more about the waivers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. 

A House Labor-Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee Marks Up Fiscal Year 2023 Funding Bill, Sends to Full Committee

On Thursday, June 23, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (L-HHS) marked up and passed a funding bill for Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23). The legislation would provide a total of $124.2 billion for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in FY23, including $873 million for the Title V Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant (a $125 million increase over the current Fiscal Year 2022). AMCHP continues to support funding the Title V Block Grant at $1 billion in FY23, with robust increases for the state formula fund.

The FY23 L-HHS funding bill will next be considered by the full House Appropriations Committee on Thursday, June 30. Learn more about the House’s draft L-HHS FY23 budget with this fact sheet and the draft bill text.

Bipartisan Gun Violence Prevention Legislation Signed into Law

On Saturday, June 25, President Biden signed into law the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act (S.2938) with the goal of curbing gun violence in the wake of the recent mass shootings in Buffalo, NY and Uvalde, TX. In addition to implementing new restrictions on gun purchases, the Act appropriates funding the U.S. Departments of Justice, Health and Human Services, and Education for federal grants and programs to improve school safety and mental health. Learn more about the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act with the full legislative text, a section-by-section summary, and this breakdown of the Medicaid mental health provisions included in the bill from the Georgetown Center for Children and Families.

House Passes Mental Health Package, Includes Reauthorization of Maternal Mental Health Grants

On June 23, the House of Representatives passed the Restoring Hope for Mental Health and Well-Being Act of 2022 (H.R.7666). The bipartisan package reauthorizes and expands upon federal programs that focus on mental and behavioral health. Notably, the Act includes the entirety of the Into the Light for Maternal Mental Health and Substance Use Act (H.R.7073, S.3824), which reauthorizes and expands upon the Screening and Treatment for Maternal Depression and Related Behavioral Disorders grants to encompass maternal mental health and substance use disorders more broadly,  as well as authorizes the maternal mental health hotline. The Restoring Hope for Mental Health and Well-Being Act of 2022 now moves to the Senate for consideration. You can learn more about what is included in the Act for maternal and child health with the full bill text and with this section-by-section summary.

White House Releases Blueprint for Addressing the Maternal Health Crisis

The Biden-Harris Administration has released a Blueprint for Addressing the Maternal Health Crisis, which includes a series of actions that federal agencies will undertake with the goals of reducing maternal mortality and morbidity rates and reducing the disparities in maternal health outcomes. The Blueprint was developed in coordination with twelve federal agencies and is guided by the following five priorities:

  • Increasing access to and coverage of comprehensive high-quality maternal health services, including behavioral health services.
  • Ensuring women giving birth are heard and are decision-makers in accountable systems of care.
  • Advancing data collection, standardization, harmonization, transparency, and research.
  • Expanding and diversifying the perinatal workforce.
  • Strengthening economic and social support for people before, during, and after pregnancy.

To learn more, read the full Blueprint or check out this synopsis from the White House.


Opportunities & Funding 

AMCHP Career Center: Connecting Talent with Opportunity 

AMCHP lists the top jobs available in our industry. Search and apply to open positions or post jobs on AMCHP Career Center! Search for Jobs | Post a Job. 

Career Opportunity: AMCHP Associate Director (or Director) of Policy and Government Affairs

AMCHP is pleased to announce that we are seeking an Associate Director (or Director) of Policy and Government Affairs. This senior-level position is a member of AMCHP’s Public Policy & Government Affairs Team and contributes to the advancement of maternal and child health (MCH) in the U.S. by working on initiatives that support AMCHP’s legislative agenda. This individual maintains a commitment to dismantling structural racism and rebuilding the policy systems that serve our communities in ways that center on racial and other forms of equity. The position reports to the Chief Government Affairs officer, and it’s located in Washington, DC. AMCHP offers a 100% virtual work/telework environment.

To learn more and to apply, please visit this link.

Maternal and Child Health Journal Supplement on Public Health Approaches to Perinatal Substance Use

The Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs (AMCHP) and the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) are pleased to announce a forthcoming supplement on “Public Health Approaches to Perinatal Substance Use,” to be published by the Maternal and Child Health Journal. This supplement, sponsored by AMCHP and ASTHO, will feature articles that address policies and programs dedicated to expanding access to mental health and substance use care during the perinatal period. Please read our Call for Papers to learn more.

MCH researchers, state and local public health professionals, healthcare providers, policymakers, advocates at community-based organizations, and other allied professionals are encouraged to submit manuscripts. In June and July, we are hosting a writing workshop led by Timothy Dye, Editor-in-Chief of the Maternal and Child Health Journal, to support authors. Register to attend our writing workshop here on July 22, from 1 – 3 PM EDT.

If you are interested in submitting to the supplement, reviewing manuscript submissions, or have general questions about the supplement, please email Amani Echols (aechols@amchp.org).


Partner Events & Webinars

Recordings Available: 3-Part Webinar Series on Survivor-Centered Support During COVID

Our partners at Futures Without Violence held a 3-part webinar series this spring to share findings from the issue brief “Lessons Learned About Survivor-Centered Support During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Recommendations for Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) Advocates, Pediatric Healthcare Providers, and Child Welfare and Family Violence Advocates.” This brief focuses on best practices and innovative strategies that IPV advocates and IPV service agencies can implement to form stronger support networks for survivors of violence and abuse that continue to function in emergency conditions.

Developed through a collaborative effort of the Improving Services for Violence Against Children and Women project (by Futures Without Violence, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and from research by the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh), the brief explores the connections between IPV and child abuse, the intersection of family violence with the COVID-19 pandemic, the inequities that shape them both, and practice and systems change recommendations for the field to better serve adult and child survivors during a national crisis.

Access the issue brief and the recordings from the webinar series at this link.


Publications & Resources

New Blueprint for Change: National Framework for System of Services for CYSHCN

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau recently released the Blueprint for Change: A National Framework for a System of Services for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN).

This work is the culmination of a nearly two- and half-year effort. MCHB’s Division of Services for Children with Special Health Needs (DSCSHN) gathered people and organizations across the country to collaborate, including CYSHCN and their families, consumers, health care professionals, public health leaders, researchers, and academic institutions. The vision is that CYSHCN:

  • Enjoy a full life, from childhood through adulthood.
  • Thrive in systems that:
    • Support their families, and their social, health, and emotional needs.
    • Ensure dignity, autonomy, independence, and active participation in their community.

The Blueprint for Change is a series of articles that make up a supplement in Pediatrics.  The series is comprised of:

  • A Blueprint for Change: Provides the rationale, guiding assumptions, and principles.
  • CYSHCN Profile: Uses the National Survey of Children’s Health data to highlight the diverse population of CYSHCN and their challenges to receive services in a well-functioning system.
  • Progress, Persistence, and Hope: Provides an overview of the history of MCHB’s role in supporting CYSHCN and their families.
  • Spotlight on four key focus areas: Health Equity; Family and Child Wellbeing and Quality of Life; Access to Supports and Services; and Financing of Services.

For more information and to take action, check out the Blueprint for Change web page and their Frequently Asked Questions section.

American Academy of Pediatrics: Updated 2022 Recommendations for Reducing Infant Deaths in the Sleep Environment

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), ∼3500 infants die of sleep-related infant deaths each year in the United States. AAP also reports that after a substantial decline in sleep-related deaths in the 1990s, the overall death rate attributable to sleep-related infant deaths has remained stagnant since 2000, and disparities persist.

AAP recommends a safe sleep environment to reduce the risk of all sleep-related deaths. This includes supine positioning; use of a firm, noninclined sleep surface; room sharing without bed sharing; and avoidance of soft bedding and overheating. Additional recommendations for SIDS risk reduction include human milk feeding; avoidance of exposure to nicotine, alcohol, marijuana, opioids, and illicit drugs; routine immunization; and use of a pacifier.

On June 21, AAP presented new recommendations regarding noninclined sleep surfaces, short-term emergency sleep locations, use of cardboard boxes as a sleep location, bed sharing, substance use, home cardiorespiratory monitors, and tummy time. It also included additional information to assist parents, physicians, and nonphysician clinicians in assessing the risk of specific bed-sharing situations.

Read the full updated recommendations at this link.

Recent Publications & Resources



July 2022

Cord Blood Awareness Month
Group B Strep Awareness Month
Healthy Vision Month
Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month
National Cleft & Craniofacial Awareness & Prevention Month
Sarcoma Awareness Month
UV Safety Month

Days to Note:
World Hepatitis DayJuly 28