Becoming ACEs Aware in Kern County

 

In January, 2021, First 5 Kern and Resilient Kern received a planning grant from ACEs Aware – a project of the office of the California Surgeon General and the California Department of Health Care Services.

The grant will fund the creation of a countywide Network of Care that will train and support local medical providers to screen for Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and, where needed, connect with local community partners to meet the non-medical needs of families. Specifically, this effort will engage with Medi-Cal providers and our local Federally Qualified Health Centers, who see the majority of Medi-Cal patients in Kern County.

 


Our goals for the ACEs Aware planning grant

  • Outreach to providers, education on the benefits and potential outcomes of incorporating ACEs screenings into area practices
  • Will target Medi-Cal providers and local Federally Qualified Health Centers
  • Will utilize the Kern Connected Community Network to link people to services
  • The grant is valued at $293,656 and will run through July 2021

Resilient Kern has trained hundreds of local members of the health and human services community over the last three years, and the website ResilientKern.org serves as a hub for information and recorded local webinars pertaining to trauma-informed care.

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The Kern Connected Community Network

An important part of the ACEs Aware planning grant centers around connecting patients to the services they need throughout the county through the Kern Connected Community Network (KCCN).

The KCCN has brought together and trained over 50 local agencies and organizations to help provide a smooth transition for patients to community resources.

When combined with the trained medical providers through the ACEs Aware grant, KCCN will be able to provide efficient linkages between hospitals, clinics, and local community organizations throughout Kern County that provide services vital to underserved populations.

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Learning opportunities

ACEs Aware is an initiative led by the Office of the California Surgeon General and the Department of Health Care Services to give Medi-Cal providers training, clinical protocols, and payment for screening children and adults for ACEs.

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The ACEs Aware initiative

ACEs Aware is an initiative led by the Office of the California Surgeon General and the Department of Health Care Services to give Medi-Cal providers training, clinical protocols, and payment for screening children and adults for ACEs.

In January 2019, Governor Newsom appointed Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, a national leader in pediatric medicine, research scientist, and a national voice elevating the issues around ACEs and toxic stress, as California’s first-ever Surgeon General.

Surgeon General Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, in partnership with Gov. Newsom, the state Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), and health and community leaders, is leading system reform that recognizes, and responds to, the effects that ACEs have on our biological systems and addresses the lifelong impacts of ACEs.

For the past three years, Resilient Kern (formerly known as Trauma-Informed Kern County) has trained several hundred care providers in trauma-informed care (TIC) practices.

Many past participants in these cohorts have requested further conversations and more opportunities to connect with each other, to learn what they can do to help their agency become more trauma-informed in its policies, procedures and practices.