RESOURCES FOR PROFESSIONALS
Social-Emotional Health and COVID-19 Guidelines
Zero to Thrive at Michigan Medicine presents a discussion for childcare providers regarding how to ensure the well-being of young children and their caregivers in the transition back to childcare. Keeping infants and young children healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic requires strategies to maintain physical health and safety, while also being attentive to emotional health and security. While social distancing is recommended to mitigate the spread of infection, emotional proximity is developmentally necessary for young children to feel safe and secure, especially in times of transition and uncertainty. For infants and young children, social emotional health and well-being requires physical safety and the emotional security that comes from being able to turn to their trusted caregivers for comfort and care.
Telehealth Service in Infant Mental Health Home Visiting
As we adapt to these unexpected and challenging times, infant mental health (IMH) home visitors around the world are faced with making the transition to technology as a medium to support families. Home visitors are being called upon to “hold” a great deal—their own feelings in these uncertain times, fears and worries about families navigating this crisis, and learning how to practice in new and unfamiliar ways. We are going through this alongside our clients and many of us are worried about finances and health, juggling the care of children or parents, and struggling to comprehend all of the ramifications of this new “not-normal” world. As a wise IMH therapist recently noted, “this is not ‘business as usual.’”
In collectively navigating these challenges, we want to remind ourselves that the things we already know and do as IMH providers remain relevant. Indeed, they are even more critical. Each of the components of IMH home visiting can be delivered in the “video” or “tele” environment.
In collaboration with professionals from the Alliance for the Advancement of Infant Mental Health, Starfish Family Services, and the Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health, the Zero to Thrive team put together an informational sheet that outlines strategies that can help IMH services be effective in the context of telemental health:
These are unprecedented times. But these times also create tremendous opportunities for us to practice our values- to care for others, connect with those we love, to find community and purpose wherever we can. This reminds us all of how connected we are to one another—and ultimately, we get through this together.
Additional Zero to Thrive COVID-19 guides: