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HRSA, Abt Team To Explore How Systems Changes Influence Early Childhood and Families

Rockville, Md.  –  Through a contract with the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB), Abt Global is teaming with James Bell Associates and the Center for the Study of Social Policy to evaluate MCHB’s Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Health Integration P-3 Program (ECCS HIP-3). This two-year project will provide a more precise understanding of how state-level systems change—involving family leadership, governance, financing, data, and cross-sector collaboration—may affect equitable outcomes for child development and family well-being. It is intended to identify which systems-building efforts are most likely to have positive long-term outcomes and generate recommendations to ensure the program can achieve and measure its desired impacts.

The prenatal-to-age-three period in a child’s life is critical for successful development, with early experiences and relationships shaping biology, behavior, and health across the lifespan. For 20 years, ECCS HIP-3 has sought to improve the health of pregnant and parenting people and young children by supporting grantees to ensure communities can provide comprehensive and coordinated services that meet families’ needs.

The team will document awardees’ progress toward programs goals and the measures used and recommend ways to evaluate future early childhood systems initiatives. The Abt team will conduct an environmental scan and case studies, grounded in the perspectives of states and parent representatives doing this work.

“Having worked at the nexus of early childhood systems and evaluation for decades, we are thrilled to be awarded this contract, with our partners, to be able to better understand systems change and how to direct future systems-level efforts in the early childhood space,” said Allison Dymnicki, Ph.D., Abt’s project director.

About Abt Global
Abt Global is a global consulting and research firm that combines data and bold thinking to improve the quality of people's lives. We partner with clients and communities to advance equity and innovation—from creating scalable digital solutions and combatting infectious disease, to mitigating climate change and evaluating programs for measurable social impact.

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