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- Published: 2021
- What was the cost to the local social service provider to deliver the Steps to Success home visiting program?
- What resources did the local provider require to deliver the program?
- How did the cost compare to other home visiting programs?
Cost is often a primary concern when policymakers and practitioners consider a new program. This brief provides information on the cost of implementing an enhanced home visiting program for adolescent mothers. The information comes from an evaluation of the Steps to Success home visiting program in San Angelo, Texas, which Mathematica conducted for the Administration for Children and Families within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. For the evaluation, trained staff from Healthy Families San Angelo (HFSA) provided Steps to Success to pregnant or recently postpartum mothers ages 14 to 20. HFSA developed Steps to Success by enhancing a traditional home visiting program offered by the organization. On average, each mother received a total of 33 home visits over two years. Mathematica partnered with HFSA staff to collect information on the program’s cost, with the goal of understanding the resources required to provide the program and how its cost compares to other home visiting programs.
This brief summarizes key cost findings from the evaluation of Steps to Success in Texas. It presents information on the resources required to deliver the program and the average cost per home visit and the average cost per participant. The brief also summarizes how the average cost per participant compares to other home visiting programs.
Key Findings and Highlights
- The study team estimated the average cost of Steps to Success at $233 per home visit and $7,689 per participant.
- Personnel costs for the home visitors and other program staff accounted for the largest share (85 percent) of the total cost.
- The estimated cost per participant for Steps to Success is in line with publicly available cost estimates for other home visiting programs.
Program costs were estimated using the resource cost method, which involves identifying all the resources required to deliver a program and assigning dollar values to each resource identified. The cost estimates rely on data on the resources HSFA use to implement the program between September 2014 and August 2015 These resources reflect what other similar organizations would likely need to replicate the program during a steady state of operations and do not include any training or other start-up costs.
Three earlier reports presented detailed evidence on the impacts and implementation of Steps to Success in Texas:
- Preventing Rapid Repeat Births Among Adolescent Mothers: Implementing Steps to Success in San Angelo, Texas
- Enhancing a Home Visiting Program to Address Repeat Adolescent Pregnancy: The Early Impacts of Steps to Success
- Enhancing a Home Visiting Program to Address Repeat Adolescent Pregnancy: The Longer-Term Impacts of Steps to Success
Schulte Neelan, Theresa and Brian Goesling. (2020). The Cost of Implementing A Home Visiting Program Designed to Prevent Repeat Pregnancies Among Adolescent Mothers. OPRE Report #2020-133. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation.
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