Maternal Child Health (MCH) - Office of Title V and Family Health Programs

Family CollageTitle V originated as part of the Social Security Act in 1935 and is one of the largest federal block grant programs. This legislation was the origin of the federal government's pledge of support to states in improving the health of mothers and children throughout the nation. Since the original authorization, Title V has been amended several times to reflect the increasing national interest in maternal and child health (MCH) and well-being. One of the first changes occurred when Title V was converted to a block grant program in 1981, resulting in the consolidation of seven categorical programs into a single block grant. These programs were

  • MCH for children with special health care needs (CSHCN),
  • supplemental security income for children with disabilities,
  • lead-based paint poisoning prevention programs,
  • genetic disease programs,
  • sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) programs,
  • hemophilia treatment centers, and
  • adolescent pregnancy grants

Over the past three decades, several additional amendments to Title V have occurred which were intended to offer states flexibility with the block grant in responding locally to MCH needs while assuring accountability for the use of federal and state funds. The current requirements include planning activities to support several key MCH indicators and then reporting on progress. Some examples of those indicators are immunization rates, teen pregnancy rates, and the percentage of children with special health care needs whose families partner in decision-making and are satisfied with services received. States are also allowed to develop and report on additional indicators that support local needs.

The purpose of the Title V MCH Services Block Grant Program is to create federal/state partnerships to develop service systems to meet MCH challenges which include but are not limited to the following:

  • significantly reducing infant mortality
  • providing comprehensive care to women before, during and after pregnancy and childbirth
  • providing preventive and primary care services for children and adolescents with special health care needs
  • preventing injury and violence
  • immunizing all children
  • meeting the nutritional and developmental needs of mothers, children and families

The conceptual framework for services of the Title V MCH block grant is envisioned as a pyramid with four tiers of services and for which infrastructure building services is the base. Title V is the only federal program that provides services at all levels.


The conceptual framework for services of the Title V MCH block grant is envisioned as a pyramid with four tiers of services and for which infrastructure building services is the base. Title V is the only federal program that provides services at all levels.
Tier of service


1st level - infrastructure building services

2nd level - population-based services

3rd level - enabling services

4th level - direct health care services
needs assessment, policy development, quality assurance, planning, evaluation

newborn screening, immunization, injury prevention, oral health, public education

transportation, case management, WIC

basic health services, services for (gap filling) CSHCN

A significant milestone for Title V was the development of an online information system in 1996 (TVIS), whereby the Title V block grant guidance and states' grant applications and progress reports are available as a tool for multiple audiences.

Funded Programs

Abstinence Education - The purpose is to provide abstinence education information to children, adolescents, and parents across the state and for programs to promote abstinence from sexual activity with a focus on those groups which are most likely to bear children out-of-wedlock.

The Adolescent Health Program's mission is to protect and promote the health of adolescents in the state of Texas.

Audiology Services

Dental (Oral Health) Services Program - Mission Statement: To improve the oral health of Texans and to prevent dental disease through education, prevention services, and emergency dental treatment services.

Family Planning

Newborn Screening - Mission Statement: It is the goal of the Newborn Screening Case Management Program to decrease the morbidity and mortality of infants born in Texas through customer-oriented, high quality newborn screening follow-up, case management and outreach education.

Perinatal and Women's Health Program - The mission of this program is to improve health outcomes for the women and infants of Texas through the facilitation of systems and collaborative approaches. Several areas are encompassed in this program. The Texas Comprehensive Women's Health Initiative (TxCWHI) is a three-year, HRSA-funded project that is working in two Texas public health regions to facilitate the develop of women's health systems, collaboration and strategic planning. The Women's Health Network (WHN), part of the TxCWHI, is an internal TDH Workgroup that is charged with the task of developing a collaborative approach to women's health issues within the agency. Perinatal Systems focuses on the facilitation of perinatal systems across Texas. The Perinatal Systems Workgroup brings together health care providers, community-based organizations, health care administrators, consumers and other stakeholders to give input to perinatal issues that impact Texas. The Texas Folic Acid Council (TFAC), a multidisciplinary group of stakeholders, develops strategies to inform and educate health care providers and consumers about the benefits of folic acid. 

School Health Program - Mission Statement: The School Health Program will provide leadership and support to communities in their efforts to meet the health services and health education needs of their children in a school setting.

Title V Fee for Service: The Title V Fee for Service (FFS) Program funds selected public and private contractors to provide specified allowable direct care or enabling services through established rates. These services are provided to Texas residents with family incomes less than 185% of the federal poverty level who are not eligible for Medicaid services or covered by CHIP services.

Vision & Hearing Screening - Mission: Preschoolers and school children with hearing and vision problems will be identified early and linked to appropriate remedial services. School children will learn about preventive vision and hearing care.

Women, Infants & Children (WIC) - The WIC program serves pregnant women, postpartum women, infants, and children up to the age of five. Call 1-800-WIC-FORU (1-800-942-3678) to set up an appointment with your local WIC agency.

Last updated March 27, 2019