Family Health Programs

The Family Health Section engages in many projects and activities designed to improve the quality of public health programs that serve families. Learn about these state and national efforts around family health.

Our work

Wisconsin Projects

Wisconsin-specific projects within the Family Health Section

All projects listed below are intentionally using measures, regular data submission and review, and driver diagrams to organize theories of change and test change ideas to speed up learning and to improve the health of women and children. These programs focus on family health, and a designated team is working to improve how these can best serve Wisconsinites.

Children and Youth

This includes children and youth with special health care needs.

  • Adolescent and Child Health Steering Team (facilitated by the Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality): This group of Wisconsin health care systems currently focuses on increasing the number of adolescents receiving annual well visits, along with young children receiving developmental screening.
  • Aligning for Adolescent Health: Supported by the national Maternal and Child Health Workforce Development Center, this project aims to ensure a coordinated system of support for adolescents with an emphasis on populations facing inequities. Strategies include meaningful involvement of youth facing disparities, trust-building among relevant partners, and shared and transparent priorities.
  • Developmental Screening: Facilitated by Children’s Health Alliance of Wisconsin, 13 local public health department teams are working to advance developmental screening for all young children in their communities. They partner with child care providers, clinical care teams and others working with families with young children.
  • Regional Centers for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs, Marketing and Outreach: This project aims to increase awareness of Wisconsin’s Regional Centers among families and professionals so that children, youth and families are connected with available resources in a timely fashion.
  • Shared Care Planning for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs: Fourteen clinics and tribal health centers throughout the state participate in this project. Teams select populations with whom shared plans of care will be developed and used to advance family-centered care planning. This collaborative is facilitated by Children’s Health Alliance of Wisconsin.
    • Families as Valued Partners in Health Care Improvement Teams: Part of the Shared Care Planning effort, this work aims to ensure families that are integrated into clinical QI teams feel they are valued partners. Tests of change have included family leadership calls, 1:1 support, and invitation letters.

Families and Communities

Family, Youth and Community Engagement within Maternal Child Health Programming: This effort supports local public health departments and contracted partner organizations to increase involvement of families, youth and community members in creating, conducting and evaluating programs. Leadership from Family Voices of Wisconsin and Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health contribute to the planning and execution of this project.


  • Perinatal Depression Screening: This effort supports nine local health departments to improve practices related to perinatal depression. With technical assistance from the Moms’ Mental Health Initiative, local agencies are focusing on perinatal depression screening, referral and follow-up, support services, and workforce development.
  • Wisconsin Perinatal Quality Collaborative (WisPQC): Led by the Wisconsin Association for Perinatal Care, WisPQC focuses on the time prior to pregnancy and through the first year of the infant's life. Current initiatives include human milk feeding, maternal hypertension and care for women and infants affected by opioids.

National Projects

National Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Networks (funding support provided by federal Maternal Child Health Bureau)
  • Adolescent and Young Adult Behavioral Health: Wisconsin is one of five states working to advance depression screening in adolescents and young adults, and appropriate follow-up when it is deemed necessary. This learning collaborative is led by the Association of Maternal Child Health Programs, National Improvement Partnership Network and Wisconsin Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
  • Children’s Healthy Weight: This collaborative is led by the Association of Public Health Nutritionists. Wisconsin’s work aims to advance breastfeeding, physical activity and understanding of good nutrition practices.
  • Children with Medical Complexity: Led by a team from Boston University, Wisconsin is one of 10 states participating in this collaborative designed to reduce unmet needs in children with medically complex conditions (commonly referred to as children with medical complexity), and their families.

Learn more

For more information about any programming or quality improvement efforts within the Family Health Section, contact Arianna Keil.

Last Revised: September 11, 2020