ABOUT BRIGHT FUTURES
Bright Futures Today
American Academy of Pediatrics
With funding from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB), the national Bright Futures child health promotion initiative has been focused at the Bright Futures Education Center of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) since 2001. AAP recently released the third edition of Bright Futures: Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents, an updated and expanded version of the original Bright Futures guidelines.
Bright Futures at Georgetown University
Since the inception of the Bright Futures initiative, Bright Futures at Georgetown University has been integrally involved in the promotion of the Bright Futures philosophy and the development of Bright Futures materials. Currently, the project is concentrating on translating Bright Futures printed materials into distance learning curricula and online-accessible tools for pediatric providers and for families through funding from MCHB and others.
Other Bright Futures Projects
Additionally, MCHB has provided numerous organizations with funding to promote Bright Futures through a variety of activities, including materials development, training, technical assistance, and outreach to families. The Bright Futures initiative has grown to incorporate many Federal, State, and privately sponsored programs including Bright Futures for Families at Family Voices, Pediatrics in Practice developed by the Bright Futures Health Promotion Workgroup, and the Bright Futures Community-Based Nutrition Planning Project at the University of Alabama.
A Brief History of Bright Futures at Georgetown University
The first phase of the Bright Futures initiative focused on the development of a set of comprehensive child health supervision guidelines. The Bright Futures guidelines were developed through the collaborative efforts of four interdisciplinary panels of experts in child health and were intended to promote and improve the health, education, and well-being of infants, children, adolescents, families, and communities.
Following review by nearly 1,000 practitioners, educators, and child health advocates throughout the United States, the cornerstone document Bright Futures: Guidelines for Health Supervision of Infants, Children, and Adolescents was published by Georgetown University. Since its first publication, copies of the guidelines have since been distributed and used in private practices, state and county health departments, social services agencies, pediatric provider training programs, public policy organizations, and various other child health settings.
Once the guidelines were published, the second phase of the Bright Futures initiative, Building Bright Futures, was launched at Georgetown. The goal of this project was to develop and publish practical tools for use in implementing the guidelines and the Bright Futures philosophy. Over 1.5 million copies of the guidelines and other Bright Futures materials have been distributed in the years following the initial date of publication. The following materials were developed and released during Building Bright Futures phase:
The Building Bright Futures initiative at Georgetown was completed with the publication Bright Futures in Practice: Mental Health. MCHB funded the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to create the Bright Futures Education Center and the Pediatric Implementation Project, while Bright Futures at GU entered a new phase of Bright Futures activities, including curriculum development, online training materials and resources, and topic specific publications.
The first of these new projects was the development of the HealthCheck Provider Education System. With funding from the District of Columbia’s (DC’s) Medical Assistance Administration (MAA), Bright Futures at GU collaborated with DC to develop an interactive, online training curriculum and resources for pediatric providers who deliver Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) services to Medicaid-eligible children in DC.
The District of Columbia’s MAA awarded Bright Futures at Georgetown a contract to maintain and support the HealthCheck Provider Education System. This project has grown to include development of a series of standardized medical record forms and the formation of a District-wide collaboration known as the DC Partnership for Children’s Healthcare Quality (DC PICHQ). The Partnership (consisting of public health professionals, managed care organizations, academic health centers, community pediatric providers, and parent advocates) is currently focusing on improvements in EPSDT activities and developmental screening and referrals and on a city-wide obesity initiative.
Also in this year, the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center at Georgetown created a MCHB-funded online Bright Futures Oral Health Tool Kit for health professionals, human services providers, and families.
Bright Futures at GU began development of the Well-Child Care curriculum with a grant from MCHB. Well-Child Care is a comprehensive training curriculum for all pediatric health professionals who provide well-child care for infants, children, and teens, especially those served by state MCH programs or by Medicaid's Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) program.
Also in this year, the National Maternal and Child Oral Health Resource Center collaborated with the American Academy of Pediatrics in the publication of the MCHB-funded Bright Futures in Practice: Oral Health Pocket Guide. This pocket guide is designed to help health professionals implement specific oral health guidelines and updates information provided in the Bright Futures in Practice: Oral Health guide published in 1996.
Developed with funding from the Center for Mental Health Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and in collaboration with the National Technical Assistance Center for Children’s Mental Health, Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development, Bright Futures at GU developed What to Expect and When to Seek Help: Bright Futures Developmental Tools for Families and Providers. These four developmental tools are based on Bright Futures in Practice: Mental Health and provide a framework for providers and families to begin conversations about how to support healthy social and emotional development in children and teens.
A companion tool, Where to Seek Help: A Bright Futures Referral Tool for Providers, is designed to help service providers guide families to available resources by identifying a roster of education, mental health, family support, child care, and other services that can address identified needs or concerns.
Bright Futures at Georgetown University received a grant from MCHB to develop a new online curriculum, Promoting Healthy Mental Development. Building on and updating information from the publication Bright Futures in Practice: Mental Health, the curriculum will focus on social, emotional, and cognitive development as well as mental health concerns.
Also in this year, the Bright Futures in Practice: Oral Health Pocket Guide was made available for viewing online or as a downloadable PDF document through funding from MCHB.