Early Brain & Childhood Development Committee

What We Do

The Early Brain and Childhood Development Committee is dedicated to improving the health of Indiana’s children by promoting practices and programs vital to brain development.

Since 2015, the Early Brain and Childhood Development Committee has focused on three priorities to promote early brain growth:

Objective 1: Institution of a statewide Reach Out and Read (ROR) coordinator and increasing INAAP member involvement in ROR Indiana to 90%.

Activities and Outcomes:

  • INAAP Early Brain and Childhood Development Committee Chair, Dr. Katie Swec, MD, FAAP, is serving as the new Medical Director of ROR Indiana and is working with ROR Indiana champions and National ROR staff to develop strategies for statewide support
  • Creation of a new ROR Indiana website
  • A new ROR Indiana “Honor Roll” featuring ROR Indiana sites and supporters on the INAAP homepage
  • Dr. Eli Rhoads, MD, INAAP resident chapter champion,  developed INAAP’s first book drive to benefit ROR Indiana programs.  The “Read IN” event took place on April 30, 2016 at the Indianapolis Central Library and raised thousands of dollars to support Reach out and Read
  • INAAP President, Nancy Swigonski, MD, MPH, FAAP, has promoted ROR as an evidence based strategy to promote early brain development  in over 20 early childhood development presentations throughout Indiana
  • INAAP is encouraging limited screen time as an important way to promote early literacy development through INAAP website resources

Objective 2: Provide universal high quality public preschool programs to every child (100%) who wants to be enrolled in Indiana.

Activities and Outcomes:

  • INAAP social media promotion of the 5-county universal preschool pilot program in Allen, Jackson, Lake, Vanderburgh, and Marion Counties and the Indy Preschool Scholarship Program
  • INAAP President, Nancy Swigonski, MD, MPH, FAAP, and INAAP Early Brain and Childhood Development Committee Chair, Dr. Katie Swec, MD, FAAP, serve on the Child Development and Well-Being Workgroup of the Governor’s Early Learning Advisory Committee (ELAC), with current efforts exploring the adoption of the “Help Me Grow“program
  • INAAP is advocating for an INAAP member to serve on each of the seven ELAC Workgroups
  • INAAP President, Nancy Swigonski, MD, MPH, FAAP, has promoted universal high quality preschool in her statewide presentations on early brain development

Objective 3: Improve developmental screening rates from 25% to 80%; Improve the diagnosis rate of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder by age three years from 12% to the national average of 24%.

Activities and Outcomes:

  • INAAP is a partner of the Child Health Improvement Partnership Indiana (CHIP IN), which has adopted developmental screening and early diagnosis of developmental disorders as their priorities. Over 70 ASQ3 kits and MCHAT-R/F screening kits have been distributed to practices throughout the state.
  • With funding from the Riley Children’s Foundation and the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), CHIP IN has visited more than 30 practices across Indiana.
  • INAAP is a partner with CHIP IN in a D70 Systems Integration grant which provides outreach and care coordination development to Early Evaluation Hubs throughout the state. These Early Evaluation Hubs provide services to approximately 93% of Indiana’s children ages 0-4 years.
  • Grand Rounds and other presentations promoting developmental screening have been given in 12 hospitals across the state.

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