December 2016


Volume 1, Issue 5: December 6, 2016

The ATTC Center of Excellence on Behavioral Health for Pregnant and Postpartum Women and Their Families (ATTC CoE-PPW) has launched Families In Focus, an e-newsletter for PPW programs. This publication contains updates on the work of the ATTC CoE-PPW, including new resources, training offerings, opportunities to connect with other PPW programs, and more. Visit to learn more about the ATTC CoE-PPW.


Coming Soon! PPW Hub: Professional Collaboration and Networking Site for SAMHSA PPW Grantees

In 2016-2017, the ATTC CoE-PPW is launching a  number of ongoing process improvement, training, and technical assistance initiatives to support the incredible work of SAMHSA PPW grantees. The PPW Hub will be the online epicenter of these activities, providing mechanisms for communication to and among grantees, resource-sharing, project calendars, and much more. PPW grantee staff participating in the PPW Process Improvement Learning Community and/or PPW Project ECHO will be individually registered for the password-protected site and can set up unique profiles to allow for networking among PPW professionals nationwide. More details will be available shortly.

New Study Confirms Importance of Family-Centered Approach to Recovery

A new study published in Psychology of Addictive Behaviors (Volume 30, Issue 6) found that mothers in outpatient treatment for substance use disorders recovered faster when their children were part of their treatment. The study compared mothers in family therapy (Ecologically Based Family Therapy) and individual therapy (Women's Health Education) and found that mothers who participated in family therapy with their children more quickly decreased their substance use. The authors are now studying the impact family therapy has on children and preliminary data suggest benefits for their mental health as well. Read more about this study ("Family systems therapy for substance-using mothers and their 8- to 16-year-old children" by Natasha Slesnick and Jing Zhang) and access the article abstract to learn more.

Did You Know? 18+ Online Courses Available on

Start improving your knowledge and skills today on a variety of important topics relating to the care of pregnant and postpartum women and their families. The site's Online Courses page contains course descriptions and links to a number of courses and content is refreshed frequently. Topics include:

  • 8-part series on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders
  • Recovery and support for criminal justice-involved women
  • Gender-responsive co-ed treatment
  • Women's health, wellness, and recovery
  • Co-occurring mental health/trauma issues and substance use disorders
  • Families and relationships in women's recovery
  • AHRQ Healthier Pregnancy series (covers preventive services, trauma-informed care, alcohol, tobacco, intimate partner violence, depression, obesity, and breastfeeding)
  • Service coordination for women with co-occurring disorders

All courses are available for free for a certificate of completion, and some charge a nominal cost for continuing education.

Spotlight on MOMS Program (Knoxville, TN): Bridging the Criminal Justice and Treatment Systems to Help Families Recovery

In a partnership between the Helen Ross McNabb Center and the University of Tennessee, the MOMS (Motivating Our Mothers to Succeed) Program is funded to increase the availability and access of residential treatment by women who are pregnant or postpartum who have a history of substance use. MOMS addresses the family system by wrapping around the mother and her significant supports and helping them reach their goals while providing a space of stabilization and bridging the gaps that other services might leave. Most notably, the MOMS program is bridging a gap in services for women who are incarcerated and in need of specialty addiction treatment and access to holistic care that will set them up for success. MOMS staff traverses a typically unwavering border by partnering with local judicial systems and accessing the women inside the jails in the community and helping them access services while providing stabilization to family members who may also be inside or outside of the judicial system. Learn more about this program and strategies for replication by reading the full Community Story and find other innovative programs across the country on the Community Stories map.


FAMILIES IN FOCUS is a publication of the ATTC CoE-PPW. You may Unsubscribe at any time.

The mission of the ATTC CoE-PPW is to strengthen the ability of the behavioral healthcare workforce to serve the pregnant and postpartum population. The ATTC CoE-PPW is funded by SAMHSA as a supplement to the Mid-America ATTC, in partnership with the Great Lakes, New England, and Southeast ATTCs.