Implementation within Systems of Care for Youth and Families

Innovative Conversations Session 15 – Recorded  June 2023

Patrick Kanary, founding director of the Center for Innovative Practices (CIP) and host of the CIP’s Innovative Conversations series, conducts a discussion on OhioRISE, Ohio’s System of Care implementation, and the challenges and lessons learned with with guests Allison Metz, Director of Implementation Practice at the School of Social Work at The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill along and Suzanne Kerns, Director of Transformative Research at the Kempe Center and Professor at the University of Colorado-Anschutz.

Ohio has just completed year one of implementing a very significant change in the Medicaid program for children, youth and families, called OhioRISE.  Besides the structural changes, such as the creation of Care Management Entities (CME) the program supports the implementation of evidence based/informed practices applicable to multi -system involved youth with behavioral health needs, and their families. 

In this podcast we’ll discuss the ‘origin story’ of Implementation Science. We’ll discuss its genesis in our field of human and social services and some of the frameworks used in Implementation Science. It’s fair to say that Implementation Science originally focused more on the program or service levels and how and why it became  increasingly focused on larger systems and inter-systems change, and if the concepts used at the larger systems level fundamentally different than those used at the program level.  

And finally, what makes Implementation Science such a critical component to the successful implementation of a variety of initiatives from localized program implementation to broad policy and systemic change.  

RELATED RESOURCES (Click on image to read and download PDF.)

A Practice Guide to Supporting Implementation

to Effective Implementation

Building Trusting Relationships to Support Implementation

Implementation Practice in Human Service Systems










Allison Metz, Ph.D., is a developmental psychologist with expertise in child development and family systems and a commitment to improving child and family outcomes and advancing equity. Allison is Professor of the Practice and Director of Implementation Practice at the School of Social Work, and Adjunct Professor at the School of Global Public Health at The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the School of Medicine at Trinity College Dublin. Allison previously served as Director of the National Implementation Research Network. Allison is co-chair of the Institute on Implementation Practice and founding director of the Collaborative for Implementation Practice at UNC-Chapel Hill School of Social Work.

Suzanne Kerns, PhD, is a Professor at the University of Colorado-Anschutz and Director of Transformative Research at the Kempe Center. Her focus is on enhancing the wellbeing of children and families through ensuring access to proven-effective treatment approaches. She is the PI for the Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse and is the President of the Society for Implementation Research and Collaboration. She previously was PI for an ACYF-CB grant in Washington State called “Creating Mental Health Connections for Children and Youth in Foster Care” and was key personnel on the University of Maryland’s ACF-funded National Center for EBPs in Child Welfare.

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