Family Crisis Center
Denver, CO 80223
Outpatient Medical Evaluations
Denver Department of Human Services and the Denver Police Department refer children to the Family Crisis Center for medical evaluation to help assess concerns for abuse and neglect. The medical providers and staff at the Family Crisis Center serve only pediatric patients and are specially trained to care for children who may have experienced trauma. Similar to a general pediatric visit, the medical evaluation includes gathering history from the child’s caregiver, gathering a history from the child, a head-to-toe physical exam, laboratory testing and x-rays if needed, providing routine safety and health advice, and partnering with the child and caregiver to develop a treatment plan.
Initial health and safety exams are also performed for children entering out-of-home placement (foster or kinship care) through the Denver Department of Human Services. This allows any urgent medical or treatment needs to be met before the child establishes care with our colleagues at Denver Health Connections for Kids Clinic.
Medical Consultation Services
The medical providers at the Family Crisis Center also serve as on-call and in-person resources for medical staff in the Denver Health Emergency Department, on the inpatient pediatric services and in the outpatient clinics. Calls from within the Denver Health system may result in recommendations for further medical evaluation, recommendations for reporting to law enforcement or DHS, or arrangement for direct medical evaluation by a child abuse provider.
Nurse Family Wellness Program
In partnership with Denver Department of Human Services, Denver Health has developed the Nurse Home Wellness Program to offer in-home support services to high risk families with children ages birth-12 years and those expecting a new delivery. These services are offered voluntarily to families, often in cases where a DHS investigation is not necessary. The goal of this program is to provide family-specific resources and education to help prevent future involvement with DHS and law enforcement. Interventions include assisting families in accessing and navigating the health care system, providing education about health conditions and medications, connecting families with community resources for basic needs (housing, food, etc.) and helping to encourage healthy, age-specific parenting skills.
The Nurse Family Wellness Program also acts as a resource for DHS caseworkers to help understand the medical concerns for children referred to DHS or in DHS custody.
Medical Passport Program
Children experiencing family separation as a result of DHS involvement may experience frequent moves between homes and health care providers. Through an electronic database, the Medical Passport Program Team facilitates communication between the health care system and DHS for children who are in out-of-home placement (foster or kinship care). The availability of up-to-date health information for case workers and foster/kinship families prevents children receiving duplicate vaccines and medical procedures, and ensures that these children have all necessary medications, paperwork and referrals for continued care.