Resource Library

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The John T. Gorman Foundation strives to be data-driven and results based and seeks to promote information and ideas that advance greater understanding of issues related to our mission and priorities. In our effort to promote these values, we offer these research and best practice resources collected from reputable sources across the country. The library also includes briefs and reports the Foundation has commissioned or supported, a listing of which can be found here.


Inter-state disparities in mortality linked to decades-old public health investments

December 13, 2021 – FamiliesMental Health, Place-based

New England researchers published a new paper in the Journal of Economic Perspectives, examining the growing inter-state disparity in mid-life mortality. The authors consider that the substantial variation might be linked with educational or income differences, “deaths of despair” (e.g., drug overdoses, suicide), or combinations of place-based policies and conditions. The authors find that the change in mortality over time doesn’t vary much by states’ educational attainment, but that states with the highest income levels, rather than the most income growth, have experienced the greatest mortality declines over time. This is notable since mortality was similar in high- and low-income places just a few decades ago. The authors investigate the possibility that in the 1990s, highincome states invested in health-promoting policy and infrastructure, like higher cigarette taxes and Medicaid expansion. They find also that related, but distinct shifts in health behaviors occurred at the same time in many of the same places, and these elements converge to produce a faster reduction in mortality in high income states. Although place and health have been linked before, the authors argue their work documents the “cumulative effect of regional policies over the life-cycle” in ways that existing research linking health and neighborhoods has not.

New Hampshire seeks contract with Vermont hospital to serve children’s mental health needs

December 6, 2021 – Young Children, Older YouthCOVID-19, Mental Health

Facing enduring elevation in the number of children seeking inpatient mental health services, the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services is proposing to contract with a Vermont hospital to provide 10 additional inpatient beds through the next six months. The department estimates 100 children could be served by such a contract—children who are otherwise waiting weeks in the emergency room for an inpatient bed in New Hampshire to become available. The director of the New Hampshire chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness noted that wait-list length has approximately quadrupled since before the pandemic and estimated that a 15-child waitlist is equivalent to a two-week wait for services. Per state data, a record 51 children were awaiting services in February 2021, although this has dropped to 12 as of December 2021. If approved, the Vermont contract would be renewable for up to four years, allowing the state to complete its planned purchase and expansion of an existing hospital to better align with child and family needs in the state.

States, including Maine, are leveraging COVID relief funds to advance equity in childcare

November 30, 2021 – Young Children, FamiliesChildcare, COVID-19, Education, Mental Health

The Center for Law and Social Policy has published a factsheet highlighting the ways that some states are investing American Rescue Plan Act funds to advance equity and bake in policy change that will support ongoing federal investment. The report specifically highlights Maine’s plan to use federal relief funds to expand mental health and socioemotional support programming to children and providers, as well as the state’s shift to enrollment-based reimbursement for subsidies (rather than the traditional attendance-based). Other states’ efforts to increase pay, reduce barriers to access through higher eligibility cutoffs or waived copays, stabilize provider revenue through higher subsidy reimbursement, or to support home-based childcare providers are also lauded.

Northeast Telehealth Resource Center receives grant to support rural Northeast health care providers with a virtual learning network

October 15, 2021 – FamiliesCOVID-19, Mental Health, Rural Workforce

A grant from the Health Resources and Service Administration is bringing an evidence-based community learning model to help rural health care providers support older Northeastern residents’ mental and physical health in the pandemic. The grant, awarded to the Northeast Telehealth Resource Center and the University of New Hampshire, will fund a five-year program called the Collaborative for Advancing Rural Excellence and Equity (CARE2). CARE2 will focus on connecting interdisciplinary health experts with community-based health care providers for mentorship, learning, and collaboration. With these supports in place, rural providers are better equipped to manage complex health conditions in their communities, including COVID variants, behavioral health issues, and substance use disorders. These supports are particularly important in consideration of the strains the health care workforce has faced during the pandemic.

Supporting immigrant children and families is critical in rebuilding the child care system and overall economy

August 11, 2021 – Families, Young ChildrenChildcare, COVID-19, Mental Health, Racial Equity

CLASP recently published a brief outlining how immigrant providers and families can utilize the two child care funding streams made available in the American Rescue Plan Act: $24 billion in stabilization grants and another $15 billion for child care assistance through the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG). Because immigrant families are a significant share of the nation’s families with children, and because immigrant workers comprise a substantial slice of child care providers, CLASP argues that excluding immigrant needs from planning processes risks leaving significant numbers of families and children behind. CLASP recommends that state agencies conduct outreach in immigrant communities to inform them about their eligibility for relief and to reduce fear and misunderstanding, support mental health services for immigrant workers and families, use funds to improve and coordinate state data systems, and be sure to bring the voices of immigrant communities into the decision-making process. #covid-19 #childcare #mentalhealth #racialequity

American Rescue Plan’s Fiscal Recovery Funds provide diverse support to those most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic

August 5, 2021 – FamiliesCOVID-19, Mental Health, Racial Equity

Early data from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities show that the $350 billion in Fiscal Recovery Funds from the American Rescue Plan has helped states, localities, U.S. territories, and tribal governments invest in education, employment, emergency housing relief, mental health services, and broadband improvements. These investments vary in approach but include expanding and strengthening affordable housing and homelessness programs; youth mental health systems; workforce skills training; college scholarships and community college programs; alternatives to policing; services for immigrants; high-speed internet in rural areas; cash assistance and disability benefits; child care systems; food banks; and infrastructure in schools. In addition, the Fiscal Recovery Funds are helping avoid budget cuts to vulnerable areas. #covid-19 #racialequity #mentalhealth

No Child Left Offline: It’s time to prioritize digital equity in America’s public schools

August 2, 2021 – Young Children, Older YouthCOVID-19, Education, Mental Health, Racial Equity

The pandemic’s impact on K-12 students has yet to be fully realized, but schools are bracing for learning losses, mental health challenges, and vast systemic and educational disparities revealed from the switch to remote learning. More than 9 million students did not have access to broadband service or an internet-enabled device at the beginning of the pandemic, having no choice but to miss online school. And because the virus has disproportionately impacted communities of color, students of color have been disproportionately learning remotely. To promote digital equity in education, Brookings scholars propose a “No Child Left Offline” initiative. #covid-19 #education #racialequity #mentalhealth

COVID-era remote patient monitoring supports at-home care for rural residents

July 14, 2021 – SeniorsCOVID-19, Health, Mental Health, Rural

In response to the pandemic, a Midwestern health system created a remote patient monitoring program that allows health care providers to monitor and advise patients without requiring an emergency room visit. The program includes vital-sign-monitoring equipment and a tablet equipped with video communication software, which only requires a cell signal and not internet access. Although the program was created to reduce hospital crowding and in-person exposures in the pandemic, providers find that not only do patients appreciate home-based care, providers are also able to more quickly identify changes in patient status given the ongoing monitoring. The additional benefit of easy check-ins also eases anxiety and loneliness among older adults living alone. #covid-19 #rural #mentalhealth #health

For Massachusetts families, early educators provide a critical pandemic support

July 1, 2021 – General – Childcare, COVID-19, Education, Mental Health

A new report from Harvard draws data from families and early educators in its ongoing Early Learning Study of Massachusetts to describe child wellbeing in the pandemic, and to identify the supports that are critical in allowing families to cope. The report acknowledges the significant damage the pandemic has wrought to children’s socio-emotional wellbeing and suggests that while recovering from academic losses is important, attention must also be paid to the social and interpersonal context in which learning occurs. More than half of participating educators said they’ve noticed child behavioral change in the pandemic, although increased demonstrations of child resiliency were sometimes part of this documented shift. The report finds that early educators serve as a resource and support for children, while families draw strength from enhanced opportunities for togetherness. #covid-19 #education

Pandemic-related stress felt by moms can trickle down to their kids

May 27, 2021 – Families, Young ChildrenCOVID-19, Mental Health, Racial Equity, Workforce

Data from the Rapid Assessment of Pandemic Impact on Development – Early Childhood revealed that widespread job loss and increased emotional strain has impacted mothers and young children. On top of job loss, mothers have experienced higher levels of anxiety, depression, stress, and loneliness that has influenced their children’s levels of emotional distress, leading to anxiety, fear, and worry among young children. All of this has been compounded by caregivers having a lower capacity to reduce their children’s stress levels or protect them from distress. Despite these findings, unemployed mothers were still able to care for children with the help of aid, such as unemployment insurance and stimulus payments. #covid-19 #workforce #racialequity #mentalhealth

Harvard experts make the case that racism inhibits child development

May 21, 2021 – FamiliesEducation, Mental Health, Racial Equity, Workforce

In a new research brief, Harvard’s Center on the Developing Child unpacks the ways that addressing racism can open new opportunities for child wellbeing and success. The brief notes the established link between racism and worse child and family outcomes, pointing specifically to the known pathways connecting toxic stress, trauma, and recurring adversity to later life outcomes like school readiness, educational achievement, and economic productivity. #racialequity #place-based #education #mentalhealth

Providing more rural transit for isolated older adults can be cost-effective

May 21, 2021 – SeniorsMental Health, Rural Transportation

Researchers at North Dakota State University have published their U.S. Department of Transportation-sponsored cost-benefits analysis on public transportation for older adults. Specifically, researchers weighed the costs of expanding public transportation to increase mobility options with the benefits of reducing social isolation among older adults living in small urban and rural areas. Across 10 study states, they found that it was cost-effective to provide between 3-10 public transportation trips per month per isolated older adult; that is, the costs of providing this transportation were lower than the extra Medicare costs associated with isolation. #mentalhealth #rural #transportation