Improving care. Changing lives.

Judge Baker Children's Center Presents at Annual Research & Policy Conference on Child, Adolescent, and Young Adult Behavioral Health in Tampa, FL

Tampa 2018

BOSTON, MA  (March 2018) - Judge Baker Children's Center (Judge Baker), a national leader in children's mental health, presented six papers at the Annual Research and Policy Conference on Child, Adolescent, and Young Adult Behavioral Health hosted by the Department of Child and Family Studies (CFS) at The University of South Florida in Tampa. 

The conference, convened each year since 1988, brought together top researchers, administrators, policy-makers and more with the goal of promoting research for improving service systems for children and youth with mental health challenges and their families. The gathering, known as "The Tampa Conference" was held in partnership with the Children's Mental Health Network, Morehouse School of Medicine and other nationally recognized organizations in the field. Over 500 research and child mental health professionals participated.

Presentations given by Judge Baker professionals included one on the Early Intervention Partnerships Program (EIPP), a promising home visiting model standardized by Judge Baker. Co-authored by Rhea Chase, PhD, Director of Early Childhood Programs, Robert Franks, PhD, President and CEO, and Matthew Pecoraro, MSW, Policy and Program Associate, Early Intervention Partnerships Program: Working With a State System of Care To Enhance a Promising Early Childhood Intervention Model outlined Judge Baker's work with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health to engage stakeholders, operationalize the model, and promote standardization and access to best practices within a statewide system of care.

Dr. Christopher Bellonci, DFAACAP, Vice President of Policy & Practice and Chief Medical Officer at Judge Baker, was Symposium Chair for Judicious Use of Psychotropic Medications for Youth in Foster Care: Empowering Youth to Guide the Way. The discussion centered around the high rates of prescription of psychotropic medications for youth in the US foster care system, and offered research and insights to help guide policy makers and inform leaders in state welfare agencies. Presentations from three teams shared different perspectives on promoting the patient-centered use of psychotropics: findings from a systematic research review, a youth-driven policy initiative, and a qualitative study of youth perspectives regarding shared decision-making.

"If we want to affect change and improve access and quality of care for children and families, we must think beyond our own jurisdictions," said Dr. Robert Franks. "Events such as The Tampa Conference provide the perfect opportunity to collaborate across systems, across states, and across disciplines. They provide the setting for Judge Baker Children's Center to bring our expertise and work to the national arena."

Dr. Franks was also the Symposium Chair for an overview of the Center's efforts at promoting evidence-based practices via the New Hampshire Modular Approach to Therapy for Children with Anxiety, Depression, Trauma, or Conduct Problems (MATCH-ADTC) Learning Collaborative. Colleagues Daniel Cheron, PhD, ABPP, Director of Training, Charlotte Vieira, MPH, Implementation and Quality Improvement Coordinator, and Rachel Kim, PhD, Post-doctoral Fellow, presented on the MATCH-ADTC Learning Collaborative including describing the structured methodologies for implementation and training.

MATCH-ADTC is a professional training program for mental health providers designed to improve skills and understanding of treatment options for children with anxiety, depression, trauma or conduct problems. Judge Baker presented four papers involving MATCH-ADTC at The Tampa Conference:

  • Promoting Evidence-Based Practice in Statewide System of Care: the New Hampshire Match Learning Collaborative
  • The MATCH Treatment Model: Training, Consultation, Supervision, and Sustainability
  • Assessing Organizational Readiness as a Tool to Promote the Successful Implementation of EBP's
  • Tools and Methods to Implement EBP's with Good Outcomes: the New Hampshire MATCH-ADTC Learning Collaborative

More information and conference details are found at

An affiliate of Harvard Medical School, Judge Baker Children’s Center is a nationally recognized children’s mental health organization dedicated to improving the quality of mental health care for children and families. Named in honor of Harvey Humphrey Baker, the first judge appointed to the Boston Juvenile Court, Judge Baker opened its doors in 1917 and has been serving the children and families of greater Boston for 100 years. The multi-faceted organization provides the very best in evidence-based practices for children and families struggling with a range of behavioral, emotional, educational, and mental health issues. Judge Baker is dedicated to improving the lives of children and families by bridging the gap between science and practice to improve access to the highest quality care in community-based settings.