Ask Dr. Holmes : Why are my kids taking medications?

Dr. William HolmesQuestion

The doctor we use doesn’t explain anything to us when we go to our medication appointments.  I don’t fully understand why my kids are taking the medications they take and how long they need to take them for.


This is a very important issue. As the caregiver, you are responsible for knowing as much as possible about the care your children are receiving. In fact, if you are expected to give consent for treatment, you deserve and should expect to be fully informed concerning treatment decisions.

In medical offices, appointment times can be hectic and it may be difficult to fully communicate at that time. However, it is reasonable, and it’s good medical care, for your provider to make sure your questions are answered to your satisfaction.

If it’s difficult to get answers at the time of the appointment, you might ask if there is some other way to get your questions answered. If difficulties continue, then you will wait to get the support of your caseworker or placing agency in speaking with the provider. Remember, it is not an insult to ask reasonable questions, and a caring, high quality provider should not be offended by your need to be fully informed.

Please send medical questions about your foster children to

William Holmes, M.D. is the Senior Medical Director and Medical Director of Foster Care for Cenpatico Behavioral Health in Austin, TX.

Consider NFPA for your end of year giving

Today’s children are tomorrow’s leaders.  Children and youth who cannot live with their birth parents deserve well trained, safe, nurturing, loving, understanding and supported families that can welcome them to join their family for as long as they need care.  Foster, adoptive and kinship families provide such care while also providing structure, reliability, trustworthiness and stability.

Donate image

Please support the National Foster Parent Association during this giving season.  For the past 45 years, NFPA has provided training and supports to foster, adoptive and kinship families who provide family care for approximately 420,000 children each day across this great country.

The National Foster Parent Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization making your donation tax deductible.  Help our voice, as the National Voice of Foster Families”, become much louder as we advocate for all caregivers of children who cannot live at home!

Please donate today.  If you prefer to donate by mail, please mail your donation to:  NFPA, 1102 Prairie Ridge Trail, Pflugerville, TX, 78660.  Please become a member of NFPA.  You may join here or mail your membership fee to the address above.

Help us provide HOPE to the precious resilient children and youth served by foster, adoptive and kinship families.

May this Christmas season and New Year bring joy and peace to you and those you love.

NFPA-Logo-colorWith hope and love,
Irene Clements
NFPA Executive Director


The Children’s Bureau wants to feature your story!

Each year the Children’s Bureau’s National Foster Care Month initiative features Real-Life Stories from Children’s Bureau grantees and others.

As a National Foster Care Month partner, the National Foster Parent Association is helping the Children’s Bureau to find stories surrounding its 2016 theme of reunification.  This year, the theme for National Foster Care Month is “Honoring, Uniting, and Celebrating Families”.  In particular, we are looking for stories that illustrate best practices in promoting a child’s or youth’s connection with biological parents, other family members, and their cultural heritage.  Please consider stories where children and youth have been successfully reunited with a biological family and stories of foster families and biological families working collaboratively.  The National Foster Parent Association is hoping you may be a possible resource for such stories because of the promising work you do.

If you’re interested in sharing a story for this 2016’s National Foster Care Month initiative, please contact Branden Polk, Child Welfare Specialist at the Child Welfare Information Gateway ( for detailed instructions by December 31, 2015.  Stories must be submitted no later than January 15, 2016. The Children’s Bureau and collaborating organizations will offer assistance in writing the stories.  Here is a sample story to help get you started.

Thank you again for your continued support of this important initiative.

Irene Clements
Executive Director
National Foster Parent Association