Partner Spotlight: KVC Kentucky

Friday, April 9, 2021

News Contributor: Kylie Pemberton

KVC Kentucky exists to enrich and enhance the lives of children and families by providing medical and behavioral healthcare, social services, and education. They provide in home, in office, and online social service solutions and child welfare solutions. Behavioral Health Wellness Environments for Living and Learning (BH WELL) and KVC Kentucky have partnered together for program evaluations, resource development and dissemination, and presentations. 

For BH WELL, working with community behavioral health agency partners is essential to fulfill its mission of supporting mental and behavioral health environments. In regard to KVC Kentucky, Dr. Okoli, Executive Director of BH WELL states, “KVC Kentucky is an example of a behavioral health agency that welcomes innovation, evidence-based practice, and outcomes research. It is such a privilege for BH WELL to work closely with an agency whose superb leadership engenders innovation and novel practices to serve children and families facing behavioral health challenges.”

An initial project collaboration centered on developing consumer experience surveys for those who use KVC Kentucky services. KVC had a strategic plan to measure consumer experience as part of a programming outcome. They had a tool built in-house but weren’t certain about its validity. They were at a deficit until they came into contact with Dr. Okoli who led them through developing consumer experience surveys internally. Vice President of KVC Kentucky, Jarrod Dungan, put it this way, “Dr. Okoli and the BH WELL team have increased our competency around internal research and outcome development.” KVC Kentucky President, Gina Klyachkin, adds, “Most of us have been out of school for a while. While we value research and want to create the best, most reliable, and valid instruments, we didn't necessarily have the expertise that Dr. Okoli was able to bring into the collaboration.”

The survey data has been transformed into key performance indicators (KPIs). KVC has five KPIs across all of their programming. Through a quarterly quality assurance process, they analyze the data and feed it back into the programming. They also report the survey results and trends to their staff. This tool has been a key in evaluating the effectiveness of their work. It is a central product to their work. 

The instrument included an open response item as well. For KVC clientele, progress is often in small steps and the work can be challenging. Sharing positive feedback from consumers with the staff provides a sense of accomplishment and encouragement that progress is being made despite what they see in the moment.

Klyachkin shares that she is often told, "I didn't have a good experience with therapy. I don't want to try again." She continues, “Mental health is important and there are a lot of problems we can't solve on our own. Being able to feel comfortable that you can seek support, and that you'll have a good experience is really important.”

Dungan closes by saying “The partnership that we have developed with the College of Nursing and BH WELL, and Dr Okoli specifically, has had a lasting impact on our agency because of this integral tool. We always think of BH WELL when we have new opportunities that we could include them in.”

For more information about KVC Kentucky, visit their website.