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Newly Launched Community Network to Address Racial Health Disparities

Thursday, July 2, 2020

 

Children’s National Hospital announced a $36 million investment from the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation to provide families with greater access to mental health care and community resources.

"We are deeply grateful for the longstanding support and generosity of the Clark Foundation and their desire to invest in the D.C. community," said Kurt Newman, M.D., President and CEO of Children’s National Hospital. "The impact of their philanthropy will enable Children’s National to provide better maternal care and mental health resources for mothers and families, which could provide life-long benefits to children in our community."

The Clark Parent & Child Network pairs clinical innovation with community partnerships to support underserved pregnant and postpartum women and children up to age 3. It will bridge a gap between prenatal care and early childhood development with a focus on mental health:

  • Creating greater access to mental health care by increasing community-based screenings and support for pregnant women, placing more mental health specialists alongside pediatricians and creating a mental health clinic for infants and toddlers
  • Promoting positive home environments and building a stronger safety net for at-risk children
  • Placing family advocates in vulnerable neighborhoods
  • Establishing a network of community partners to support families with social, emotional and financial challenges

"Simply put, healthy moms have healthy babies," said Catherine Limperopoulos, Ph.D., Director of the Developing Brain Institute at Children’s National. "The goal of the Clark Parent & Child Network is to give all women supportive and positive environments for them and their children."

In addition to Children’s National, the Clark Foundation is investing in other hospitals and community-based care providers in Washington, D.C. These Clark-funded organizations will share findings and progress with one another, working hand-in-hand to help pave the way for a healthy, thriving future for children and families.

"As the premier children’s hospital in the region, Children’s National Hospital has been a longstanding partner of the Clark Foundation, the Clark family and countless families in D.C.," said Courtney Clark Pastrick, Clark Foundation Board Chair. "We are proud to invest in their work to meet families where they are and provide critical support to mothers, caregivers and children during their early years of life. We are confident that Children’s National’s commitment to innovation and to sharing best practices with providers across the city will result in impact, not only at a family level, but at a community level and beyond."

"Our team is excited to build a powerful network in partnership with vital community groups, thanks to the city-wide investment of the Clark Foundation," said Lee Beers, M.D., FAAP, Medical Director of Community Health and Advocacy at the Child Health Advocacy Institute at Children’s National. "This is a tremendous opportunity to affect significant and lasting change at the family, community and eventually population level."

The Clark Parent & Child Network launched on July 1, 2020.

For more information on how you can support the Clark Parent & Child Network and our city’s most vulnerable families, contact Jessica Miley at JMiley@childrensnational.org or 617-803-9010, or give today.


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