Ask Dr. Holmes: Obamacare’s Impact on Your Foster Child


Is Obamacare going to impact the insurance for my foster children?


The short answer is “No,” not at this time, and likely not in the future. The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as “Obamacare,” was put in place to provide insurance coverage for individuals who could not obtain coverage through other types of private insurance, and who were not eligible for Medicare or Medicaid. In all states, children and youth in the foster care system are covered under state Medicaid. Therefore, no consideration needs to be given to finding coverage for these children.

The issue of health care and insurance continues to evolve, and it is likely that there will be further changes in the next few years. However, it is understood that the states have a responsibility for providing health care coverage for children placed in foster care. It is unlikely that there will be changes in this coverage in the near future.

“I Am Not Alone” Creating a Foster Parent Support Group

In this podcast, Mandy Taylor, Adoptive Parent and Foster Parent Retention Specialist at Bethany Christian Services in Grand Rapids, MI shares her experience developing a Post-RPC Training Support Group. Mandy leads a monthly meeting where concepts and ideas from the RPC are reviewed. The group also explores how this knowledge can be applied to their current parenting. Additionally this podcast discusses the importance of creating a space for parents to give and receive validation, generate camaraderie amongst parents, and provide one another with tangible parenting suggestions. The group is built upon the premise that if healing is done through the context of relationships, then resource parents too need supportive relationships as they act as agents of healing for their children.

Listen to this 6 minute podcast at:

See the NCTSN podcasts on iTunes at

NCTSN_Black+White_jpgPodcasts are provided by National Child Traumatic Stress Network Learning Center who offer free online education.  We thank them!

Horatio Alger Scholarships Open In ID, LA, MO

The scholarship application is now open for students in Idaho, Louisiana, and Montana until April 15, 2016.

Please encourage high school seniors graduating in the spring 2016 to apply for this scholarship opportunity at

Award Amounts:

Idaho – $7,000 to 25 high school seniors

Louisiana – $10,500 to 25 high school seniors

Montana – $7,000 (the University of Montana and Montana State system schools will provide an additional $5,000 making the total award $12,000)


To be considered eligible for Horatio Alger Scholarship Programs, applicants must:

¨ Be enrolled full-time as a high school senior in the United States, progressing normally toward graduation in spring/summer of 2016 with plans to enter a college in the United States no later than the fall following graduation
¨ Exhibit a strong commitment to pursue and complete a bachelor’s degree at an accredited non-profit public or private institution in the United States (students may start their studies at a two-year institution and then transfer to a four-year institution)
¨ Demonstrate critical financial need ($55,000 or lower adjusted gross family income is required)
¨ Be involved in co-curricular and community service activities
¨ Display integrity and perseverance in overcoming adversity
¨ Maintain a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 2.0
¨ Be a United States citizen

For the Idaho, Louisiana, and Montana scholarships students must also meet the criteria below.

¨ Idaho – applicants must reside in the Idaho counties of Benewah, Boundary, Bonner, Kootenai, Latah, or Shoshone and must attend North Idaho College, Lewis-Clark State College (Coeur d’Alene or Lewiston campus) or the University of Idaho
¨ Louisiana – applicants must pursue a bachelor’s degree at a college in Louisiana
¨ Montana – applicants must pursue a degree at a University of Montana or Montana State University system school.

2016 Play It Forward Contest – Apply Now!

We are excited to announce the opening of the 2016 “Play It Forward” Contest!  CedarWorks, a Maine-based custom play set company has partnered with the National Foster Parent Association for a 3rd year in a row to award several very deserving foster families with a free individualized custom play set.

Entries must be received by March 15, 2016 and all applicants must be current foster families and members of NFPA.

For a list of official rules and to submit your entry form, please go to

Good luck!

Ask Dr. Holmes: What is Prazosin?

dr. william holmesQuestion:

What is Prazosin and why would my child take it?


Prazosin is a medicine that was originally developed to be used for high blood pressure (hypertension), and it has been on the market for many years. In terms of its action, Prazosin is similar to the Clonidine and Guanfacine, both of which have been used in child psychiatry for the past 25-30 years.

There has been an increased interest in Prazosin over the last few years as a result of some research done in military mental health settings. There is evidence that Prazosin may have particular benefit in decreasing nightmares and helping with improved sleep in individuals who are struggling with symptoms of PTSD.

No specific research has been done with child and adolescents, but Prazosin is being used with younger ages in cases where there are strong concerns related to symptoms of PTSD. For the most part Prazosin is well tolerated. It is usually given at night and it can cause drowsiness, which of course is one of the reasons it can help with difficulty falling asleep. Blood pressure needs to be monitored, and there can be occasional daytime sluggishness. There is no regular blood work or other labs that need to done as part of using Prazosin.

Dr. William Holmes, MD, is the Senior Medical Director and the Medical Director for the Foster Care of Cenpatico Behavioral Health.  To submit a question to Dr. Holmes, please email him at

NFPA Youth Scholarship – APPLY NOW!

NFPA is proud to provide a scholarship opportunity to the foster, adopted and bio children of our NFPA members.  

Young man happy to graduate
Another happy graduate!

The National Foster Parent Association offers scholarships to NFPA members whose birth, foster and US adopted youth wish to further their education beyond high school, including college or university studies, vocational/technical school or junior college.  Five scholarships will be awarded to high school-level students who are graduating or getting their GED in 2016.  The foster/adopt/birth parents must be or join as a member of NFPA.

Apply now for the 2016 NFPA Youth Scholarship on our  scholarship webpage.  Applications are due no later than March 10,  2016 with notification of by April 15, 2016.

See the details on the NFPA Youth Scholarship web page.

Want to help a youth of a foster family succeed?  Donate to NFPA!