MIHOPE News September 2014
Mother and Infant Home Visiting Program
Informing the Future of Home Visiting
Of the 87 program sites across twelve states involved in MIHOPE, 25 have reached their target enrollment! These sites are run by government and non-profit organizations in a wide variety of communities and are operating Early Head Start (EHS), Healthy Families America (HFA), Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP), or Parents as Teachers (PAT) programs. The study team is still in the process of considering additional EHS sites that may become part of the study.
MIHOPE RESEARCH ACTIVITY UPDATES
As of September 8, 2014, more than 3,200 participants have been enrolled in MIHOPE.
In-person interviews with program staff have begun. In-person interviews are being used to collect additional information about what is happening on the ground at the MIHOPE sites. Some MIHOPE programs are currently participating in interviews with the MIHOPE research team. These interviews provide an opportunity for home visitors, supervisors, and program managers to share their thoughts about program operations and their work with families. This is not a performance evaluation. It is meant to give the home visiting staff a chance to tell the study team, in their own words, what it’s like to do their jobs. The interviews will also help the research team better understand and interpret all of the other information being collected. Some interviews will be one-on-one and some will be in small groups. All of the interviews will last about an hour and a half each.
We have launched the 15-month MIHOPE follow-up interviews with families. The second phase of the MIHOPE study includes a survey interview with parents or caregivers when children are about 15 months old. In addition to the interview, members of the study team schedule a time for an in-home visit with each child’s parent or primary caregiver where they do fun parent-child activities and measure the child’s height and weight. These visits are currently taking place in six of the MIHOPE states.
Selected home visits are being videotaped in nine MIHOPE states. Home visits are being recorded and analyzed as part of the implementation study, in particular to understand how home visitors interact with the families they serve.
MIHOPE-STRONG START RESEARCH ACTIVITY UPDATES
MIHOPE-Strong Start is enrolling study participants! The MIHOPE-Strong Start team is training home visiting staff to enroll families into the study in a variety of sites. Some local programs are enrolling families in both MIHOPE and MIHOPE-Strong Start, and some are participating only in MIHOPE-Strong Start. The study team is continuing to recruit Healthy Families America and Nurse-Family Partnership programs to participate in the study. They are talking with state and local program leadership about engaging additional states in MIHOPE-Strong Start, to contribute to the total number of families and geographic diversity of the study.
A new video to help explain the study to community partners is available. The video depicts two referral partners discussing MIHOPE-Strong Start. This is a great tool for sites to use in their community.
CONFERENCES AND EVENTS
Members of the MIHOPE research team participated in the 2014 National Head Start Research Conference on July 8, 2014. They were part of a panel about home visiting and how it uses referrals and coordination as part of a network of early childhood services. The conference was sponsored by the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE) in conjunction with the Office of Head Start. The conference focused on examining the latest research on collaboration, integration, coordination, and alignment of systems supporting young children and their families. The MIHOPE team shared early lessons learned about measuring referral and program coordination efforts and provided links to the MIHOPE surveys for researchers who are interested in using them.
Webinar segments highlight frequently asked questions about participating in MIHOPE-Strong Start. Seven brief clips that draw from a webinar recorded in January 2014 answer specific questions about MIHOPE-Strong Start. Listen to home visiting supervisors participating in MIHOPE discuss their experiences talking about the study with families and referral partners, Dr. David Olds (developer of Nurse-Family Partnership) talking about the ethics of random assignment and the importance of continuing to build the evidence base, and the MIHOPE-Strong Start research team responding directly to questions from potential sites. The complete webinar and specific segments are on the MIHOPE-Strong Start webpage.