Child Health and Development Team

The MSU-Hurley Children's Hospital Pediatric Public Health Initiative's Child Health and Development team works with many partners to advocate for, implement, and assess child development promoting interventions. Leaning on the science of toxic stress, resilience and brain plasticity, our work is weighted in the critical period of early childhood. 

As a community, Flint has made massive investments and expansions in home visiting programs, parenting support, trauma-informed care, behavioral health services, medical home access, Medicaid expansion, quality child care and preschool opportunities, school health services, mindfulness and so much more!


Here are a few of the highlighted PPHI programs:

Video Interaction Project (VIP)

  • The program is designed around the pediatric health care visit to enhance language and literacy in at-risk children through the promotion of positive parenting. The goal of the program is to build parenting skills and promote self-efficacy. Learn more visit:
  • The medical director of VIP is Dr. Lauren O'Connell. Dr. O'Connell is a fellowship-trained Development and Behavior Pediatrician (DBP) with an expertise in positive parenting.

Early Literacy

Under the banner of 'Flint Kids Read,' the entire Flint community is working to expand early literacy efforts in Flint, with the goal of providing 100 percent of children in Flint with access to age-appropriate books at home and optimal kindergarten readiness

  • Reach Out and Read: In 2016, Hurley Children’s Clinic was the only pediatric office to offer Reach Out and Read (ROR) in Genesee County. Reach Out and Read (ROR) is a national evidence-based program that has been shown to increase reading at home, improve vocabulary, and provide critical brain stimulation. The medical provider gives each child age birth to 5 years an age-appropriate book at every good visit and encourages families to read aloud with their children every day. Learn more visit:
  • Born to Read: Parents of newborns at Hurley Medical Center are receiving a literacy bundle as part of the program, Born to Read.
  • Imagination Library: Dr. Hanna-Attisha was awarded the Aspen Ideas Spotlight Health Award for Flint Kids Read, which launched the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library program in Flint. Every child from birth to age five, living in Flint, can enroll to receive an age-appropriate book delivered to their home through the mail every month. Learn more visit:


Flint Kids Are

  • 'Flint Kids Are' campaign is a community-wide communications initiative to help inspire hope and promote the potential for Flint area kids. The 'Flint Kids Are' gives kids a way to tell their own story, using their own words.
  • Learn more: