Getting off to a Good Start: The Importance of Early Childhood to Lifelong Health 

Amy D. Herschell, PhD

Thursday, June 30, 2022


The preschool years are an amazing time in a child’s life; a time filled with growth, joy, and sometimes challenges. This presentation will focus on the importance of early childhood and the lifelong impact of "getting off to a good start.” We will discuss the value of early relationships, the impact of chronic stress on children and families, when to think about consulting a behavioral health provider, what interventions are available for young children, and what caregivers should consider when looking for treatment. A special emphasis will be placed on evidence-based treatments, including Parent-Child Interaction Therapy. This session will be interactive with lots of opportunities for questions and discussion. 


This presentation will be relevant for anyone who has contact with young children including caregivers, early childhood professionals (e.g., teachers, speech therapists), and behavioral health providers (e.g., psychologists, social workers, peer support specialists, community-based behavioral health professionals). 

About our Speaker

Amy D. Herschell, Ph.D. is the Senior Director of Research Strategy and Outcomes Management for Community Care Behavioral Health Organization, UPMC Insurance Services Division where she leads the development and implementation of rigorous, high-priority evaluations and oversees outcome activities in support of program advancements (e.g., early childhood wellness, evidence-based practice implementation). Trained and licensed in Pennsylvania as a clinical psychologist, Dr. Herschell’s clinical interests have focused on collaboratively developing high-quality, community-based care for young children and their families. 

Dr. Herschell is a Global Trainer in PCIT (Parent-Child Interaction Therapy). Global Trainers are approved to conduct the training and consultation of professional or graduate-level clinicians in national and international mental health service delivery systems. Global Trainers are also vetted to train Within Agency and Regional Trainers on a national and international scope. 

Dr. Herschell has served as the Principal or Co-Principal Investigator for several externally funded grants (e.g., NIMH, CDC, SAMHSA) and has published extensively on topics related to young children, and implementation science, workforce development, evidence-based practices, and training approaches. She lives in the North Hills of Pittsburgh with her husband, Aaron, and two children, Lucas (15 years old) and Rachel (10 years old). 

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PowerPoint slides: Getting off to a Good Start: The Importance of Early Childhood to Lifelong Health