Help Me Grow

This process is currently being replicated across the country, including West Virginia.  The Help Me Grow (HMG) project promotes the early detection of children at risk for developmental and behavioral problems.  Built upon a foundation of four critical components, 1) medical provider outreach, 2) community outreach, 3) data collection and 4) centralized single point of entry call system, HMG links children and families with the appropriate resources quickly and effectively.  Since 2002, 85% of children referred to a HMG affiliate have been successfully connected with community-based programs and services. HMG has been able to respond to the national need for a comprehensive system that ensures early detection leads to the linkage of at-risk children and their families to community-based programs and services, while also ensuring the linkage with the medical home is prevalent throughout the whole process.  A presentation by Carol Weitzman, MD, Department of Pediatrics and Child Study Center, Yale University School of Medicine, indicated three reasons why HMG is effective: 

  • Increases emphasis on the use of data for quality improvement processes

  • Encourages developmental screening being used as a pediatric performance measure,  and

  • Provides organized linkages to services central to medical home service delivery.

  • HMG was launched in 1998 with a long-term vision of operation within all 50 states. West Virginia recently became the 17th HMG affiliate and was noted for being exemplary for the “embedding” approach on integrating HMG within related initiatives and frameworks (e.g., Part C, Home Visiting, Strengthening Families) to build a statewide system of helping identify/support young children’s developmental needs. Utilizing HMG as a centralized hub for ensuring families receive information on AAP Bright Futures recommended screening of 9, 18, 24 and 30 months can ensure families are screened early and results are shared with medical providers for the child’s next well-child visit.


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