Nebraska Medicaid Program

Current Initiatives

Children's Mental Health and Substance Abuse Statewide Infrastructure Grant (SIG)

Early Childhood Mental Health Subcommittee
The Early Childhood Mental Health Subcommittee focused on the state infrastructure needed to address the mental health needs of young children (ages 0-5) and their families in Nebraska.

Advances in infant and toddler mental health research and practice indicate that very young neglected and abused children suffer significant disruptions to their emotional, cognitive and physical development. Systems that support development of healthy children promote positive mental health, prevent mental health problems in young children and their families, and support intervention for children and families impacted by mental health disorders.

PDFMeeting Minutes

November 7, 2005

September 16, 2005

August 5, 2005

There is a growing recognition that early childhood mental health is influenced by the physical characteristics of the child, the quality of adult relationships in the child’s life, the care giving environment, and the community context in which the child and family live.

Nebraska has a number of systems that interface with young children and their families. There is a need to identify shared expertise and practices that support development of coordinated state infrastructure to enhance community level interventions and programs. Interventions and programs in early childhood mental health promote social, emotional, and behavioral well-being of children, birth through age five, and their families.


  1. Developed strategies for early identification of children at risk for experiencing social, emotional or behavioral problems, and services to address their needs.
  2. Developed system strategies for screening, referral and treatment for perinatal depression.


August – February 2006


State Infrastructure Grant



Committee Members Affiliation Location

State Agency

Carol Fichter

Early Childhood Training Center


Paula Eurek



Eleanor Shirley Kirkland

Department of Education


Marcia Corr

Department of Education UNMC


Betty Medinger

DHHS Children and Family Services


Linda Shandera

DHHS Medicaid and Long Term Care


Chris Hanus

DHHS Children and Family Services


Pam Mann

Western Service Area

North Platte

Judy Gaiashkibos

Commission on Indian Affairs


Cecelia Oliverez

Mexican American Commission


Denny Behrens

Office of Rural Health


Deanne Armstrong

Drug Awareness Task Force


Roger Wiese

North Central Health District



Tanya Rasher-Miller

Central Nebraska System of Care


Jodi Hall

Region I Behavioral Health


Helen Raikes UNL Lincoln
Jean Wojtkiewisz Region III Behavioral Health Kearney
CJ Johnson Region V Behavioral Health Lincoln
Frank Peak Creighton University Omaha
Dianna Waggoner Kim Foundation Omaha
Donna De Forge Headstart Gering
Barb Johnson Monroe Meyer Institute Omaha
Mary Fran Flood UNL Psychology Department Lincoln
Andrea Skolkin One World Community Health Center Lincoln
Mary Jo Pankoke Nebraska Child and Family Foundation Lincoln


Mary Barry-Magsamen Executive Director-St. Monicas Lincoln
Candy Shott Fred Leroy Health Center Omaha
Judith Hill Charles Dres/Healthy Start Omaha
Sheila Bierman Out-Patient Clinic Boys Town Omaha
Bill Swisher Pediatrician Lincoln
Gay McTate Provider Omaha
Shashi Bahtia Psychiatrist Creighton University Omaha


Nina Baker Parent Training Institute Omaha
Kathy Dunning Healthy Families Project Lincoln
Glenda Davis Parent Training Institute Omaha
Cindy Scott NAMI-FORSE Hastings
Julie Erickson Families Inspiring Families Lincoln

Documents in PDF PDF format require the use of Adobe Acrobat Reader which can be downloaded for free from Adobe Systems, Inc.