The Department of Pediatrics Clinical Population and Behavioral Health Program is an innovative health and behavioral healthcare delivery organization working to improve overall health and quality of life by ensuring that our patients and their families receive resources and care they need. Our mission is to improve the behavioral, physical, and social health of the diverse population we serve. Programs listed below are designed to empower patients to overcome barriers through holistic family-centered care coordination services available in homes, communities, and healthcare settings. Our team of community health workers, care coordinators, and behavioral health care coordinators have training and experience in:

  • aiding with navigation of the healthcare system
  • making referrals to health and social services
  • offering ongoing patient and family support

Pay for Performance Contracts: Through a contractual agreement with the UI Health Physician Group, a team with expertise in patient engagement and care navigation assists members of assigned Illinois health plans to:

  • improve their health outcomes
  • increase UI Health’s “Star Rating”
  • increase compliance with HEDIS (Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set) measures

Patient Engagement and Satisfaction Programs: Primarily utilized in the Department of Pediatrics, the program focuses on patient retention and appointment adherence through:

  • reminder phone calls for next-day appointments
  • disengaged patient outreach
  • patient experience follow-up

Health Equities Programs: Using an integrated model (closely aligned with the original CHECK model), community health workers and behavioral health staff identify barriers to care within the Social Determinants of Health. Efforts are then centered on addressing healthcare inequities due to such identities as race and gender.

Healthy Steps: Building on previous success within the Department of Pediatrics, Healthy Steps is integrated with pediatric care models. Within the context of well-baby and other pediatric appointments, the goals are to:

  • help caregivers of children aged 0-3 identify and address developmental needs
  • support healthy parent/child engagement

Neonatal Follow-up Support: This program is an extension of Healthy Steps that facilitates completion of Bayley assessments within the Neonatal Follow-up Program. Families are then guided to a specialized level of care, which provides an entry point into larger supports within the Department of Pediatrics that include the Clinical Population and Behavioral Health Program.

Behavioral Health Programs: Utilized both as a standalone model and as an integrated component of other programs, behavioral health needs of each patient are identified through an integrated and stepped care model. Each patient is then offered services at the appropriate level such as:

  • preventive interventions
  • consultative support
  • direct interventions
  • supported referrals

HISTORICAL NOTE: The Clinical Population and Behavioral Health Program began as CHECK, which was a federally funded grant awarded to the UIC Department of Pediatrics in 2014. CHECK employed about 30 community health workers and behavioral health staff to provide care coordination services to Medicaid recipients in the Chicagoland area. CHECK’s focus was on addressing social determinants of health through an integrated model of care by connecting patients and families to services needed to eliminate barriers and thereby empowering them to engage in their own care. About 6,000 families received more than 200,000 services, which included preventive behavioral health interventions, disease specific education, individual therapy, service referrals, home visits, and crisis interventions. The grant phase of the program was completed in 2018, and CHECK then transitioned to the healthcare marketplace. To learn more about the original CHECK program, visit