Care Passport Program
What Is The
The Foster Care Passport Program is a statewide program in Washington.
Skagit County Public Health is funded by the Children's Administration
of the State of Washington to implement the Passport program in Skagit
County in collaboration with Children's Administration caseworkers. The
program compiles the health history of children in foster care into an
abbreviated health record called a Passport. The Passport includes information
about medical and dental exams, diagnoses, hospitalizations or surgeries,
immunizations, allergies and medications- the information needed by caseworkers,
foster parents, parents, and health care providers to manage the child's
health care needs appropriately.
Why Is This
Children in foster care have disproportionately high rates of physical,
developmental, and mental health problems and may arrive at their foster
homes with unmet medical and mental health needs (American Academy of
Pediatrics [AAP] Policy Statement, Nov. 2000). Many foster children must
move repeatedly to new foster homes. In addition, up to 35 percent of
children reenter the foster care system after being returned to their
family. Such moves usually mean that the child also changes health care
providers. As a result, available health information for these children
is often incomplete and spread across many different sites (AAP Policy
Statement, Feb. 1994). The Foster Care Passport Program was created to
help answer this problem by providing continuity of information to minimize
gaps in knowledge.
Who Is Eligible?
Children are eligible for the Passport Program if they are:
- in out-of-home
care for at least 90 days
- in the custody
of the Children's Administration of the State of Washington
funding levels do not allow for every foster child that meets the minimum
eligibility criteria to receive a passport. Children with identified health
concerns are given priority.
How Is A Passport
A public health nurse works to compile a child's records from numerous
places, including health care providers, hospitals, clinics and dentists.
These records are searched for any relevant health care history. This
information is entered into the computer and a Passport is created. The
nurse recommends preventive health care and follow-up care for identified
health concerns. These recommendations accompany the Passport and a copy
is sent to the foster parent and the social worker. The foster parent
is encouraged to take the Passport to all the child's health care appointments.
How Is The Passport
Program Different From CHET Program?
The two programs differ in staff, scope and goals The Passport Program's
nurse and program assistant compile a complete history for a limited number
of foster children. The CHET (Child Health and Education Tracking) program
serves all children in foster care and does not compile a complete history.
Instead, a social worker assesses five domains (developmental, educational,
behavioral, social history and medical) to get children high quality care
quickly. The goal of the CHET program is to make sure every foster child
receives a well-child check-up within 30 days of entering foster care.
Who Do I Call
For Information About Becoming A Foster Parent?
Call the Children's Administration at 1-(888) 794-1794 to find out more
about becoming a foster parent.
Who Do I Call
To Report Suspected Child Abuse Or Neglect?
Call (866) END-HARM or (866) 363-4276
If you would like further information or have questions, please contact
your local Children's Administration office at (360) 416-7200.
Can I Help Even
If I Can Not Be A Foster Parent?
The following are internet links that will provide you more information
on how you can help a foster child through volunteering!
- Heart Gallery -
A DSHS sponsored site that gives information on how to become a mentor
for foster children.
- Washington State
Court Appointed Special Advocate site - Information on how to become
a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) to represent the best interests
of the child.
For More Information
- DSHS website -
Washington States Department of Social and Health Services programs,
with links to many valuable resources related to children welfare.
- Foster Parents
Association of Washington State - Providing support and advocate for
foster and adoptive families in Washington State.