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									                                            Outcomes-Based Service Delivery
                                            Common Questions and Answers


    What is Outcomes-Based Service Delivery?
    Simple put, they are service where all aspects of the services are focused on the purpose of the
    work. There will be less emphasis on how and more on what happens. There will be more emphasis
    on collecting and regularly reviewing relevant data on outcomes achieved.

    What are the benefits of this type of service delivery?
    Other jurisdictions that have adopted an outcomes-based approach with contracted agencies have
    seen positive results including:
         Flexible funding mechanisms
         Potential for longer term funding commitments
         Ability to internally measure performance
         Engagement with the broader system as a partner
         Ability to reinvest committed dollars into programming
         Increased communication between agency and CFSA Case Workers

    Why are Alberta Children and Youth Services and contracted agencies moving in this
    direction?
    Both the ministry and contracted agency sector partners have identified a need to change their
    business relationship due to agency staff recruitment and retention challenges and the shifting
    service needs of children and families in Alberta. Outcomes-based service delivery provides an
    opportunity for more flexible and effective use of resources.

    When will outcomes-based service delivery be implemented?
    Over the 2009/10 fiscal year, all Child and Family Services Authorities will be working with
    contracted agencies on a phase-in plan. Calgary Region agreed to participate in the first phase of
    the plan and had their first outcomes-based contract running June 2009; Edmonton Region also
    had their contract up running as of July 2009.

    We already focus on positive outcomes for children and families and work with our
    contracted agencies to develop concurrent plans to achieve those outcomes, so why is
    there a need for a change?
    This initiative is, in fact, intended to support the good work that both caseworkers and agency
    staff already do. By clarifying roles and providing agencies with more flexibility, we believe that
    this initiative will result in a more solid system to do this more effectively.




#113 – 4910 50th Street  Coop Plaza  Lloydminster, SK  S9V 0Y5  Office (780) 871-6402  Fax (306) 820-4267  Toll Free 310-0000
                          Safe Kids Hotline 1-877-385-KIDS (5437)            www.eastcentralalbertacfsa.gov.ab.ca
Will this initiative result in a reduced number of agencies?
This initiative is not intended to decrease the number of agencies. Rather, it is intended to create
more seamless provision of services. Agencies will have more flexibility to tailor their services to
the unique needs of children and their families. This evolution in service delivery could create
opportunities for agencies to partner with other organizations/agencies to provide seamless
services to clients. Agencies will need to consider how they see themselves fitting into outcomes-
based service delivery. We are committed to working collaboratively with agencies on the
development of a system that works for the children and families that they serve.

Will this initiative result in a new practice model?
The outcomes-based service delivery initiative is not a model for how casework with families is
done. This initiative in fact supports the intent of the existing Casework Practice Model by:
 Using assessment data to build a concurrent plan that focuses on the achievement of positive
   outcomes for children, youth and their families
 Establishing a collaborative case planning process
 Engaging families and service providers

Are we adopting a model that is used in urban communities in the United States? And if
so, how will that work in rural and aboriginal communities?
While leading practices in other jurisdictions have helped inform our direction, ours is a made-in-
Alberta model. We are committed to working with stakeholders to fully develop our approach in
a way that works for families here. Aboriginal communities and service providers are significant
stakeholders in this initiative and they are involved in the development and design of a system that
works for the families that they serve.

Is Outcomes-Based Service Delivery about Performance-Based contracting and
changing current contracts?
Outcomes-based services is about our whole system of service delivery. It is about refocusing the
whole system to the purpose of our work and using our own information to guide our practice.
Agencies are part of the continuum of services that families experience and, as such, we need to
clarify our relationship with them.

Is this initiative really a move to privatize child protection?
No. We have a large contracted agency sector who provide a significant amount of services to all
of the regions of the province. Outcomes-based service delivery is intended to really evaluate and
transform how those dollars are used and how we engage with our existing contracted agency
sector to ensure the best outcomes for families as possible. We are not contemplating any shifts in
delegated authority, but are looking at a far more inclusive and collaborative decision-making
process to ensure that agencies are true partners in providing services.

Given that child protection is a complex human service delivery system, how can we truly
measure outcomes? Do they really reflect better services?
While no measures of a human service will be absolutely conclusive or exhaustive, the National
Outcomes Measures are considered to be valid measures of positive outcomes when providing
services to children at risk. Most child protection jurisdictions across the world use some
variation of the same outcome measures. Alberta is actually one of the provinces in Canada that
can measure a significant number of ‘outcomes’ as per the National Outcomes Measures. Many
agencies in Alberta also have developed systems and capacity to track agency outcomes. We will
need to work collaboratively with agencies to develop some mutual outcome and performance
tracking and monitoring.

Revised November 23, 2009
Won’t agencies be motivated to only provide services to ‘easier’ families?
Although the literature refers to a ‘Creaming’ effect (where an agency would become selective in
who they serve), there does not appear to be significant evidence that this phenomenon exists to a
large extent. In the conceptual design that is being phased in, agencies have to accept all children,
youth and families (sometimes referred to ‘no reject, no eject’) who are referred to them.
Exceptional services for the most complex children and youth will be negotiated through a
rigorous process.

How will funds be allocated to this imitative?
Resource allocation and funding will be addressed at the RFP public meeting on November 23rd,
time and location TBA at later date.

Will prevention/early intervention block funded agencies be impacted by the OBSD
implementation?
Yes. Prevention/Early intervention block funded agencies will be impacted as there will be an
expectation of alignment and collaboration of services with achievement of outcomes for
vulnerable children, youth and families in the region. At this point in time funding for the OBSD
phase in site RFP will be allocated from the resources dedicated to child, youth and families
receiving services under the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act.

Will there be a RFP for Camrose and area?
We are not able to provide a definitive answer at this stage of the implementation. The CFSA
implementation team will be in a better position to answer this question later in the spring once
we have successfully completed the implementation of the phase in site. Several factors will
impact this decision including the learning from the phase in site, funding allocation to the region
and development of a business plan strategy for strong continuum of services including early
intervention that supports vulnerable children, youth and families.

Is it necessary for an individual agency to submit a proposal to the CFSA in order to be
considered for a subcontract by lead agency?
No. An individual agency would follow the requirements that the lead agency outlines in order to
subcontract services to the lead agency.

Would an agency still contract with the CFSA to subcontract with the lead agency?
No. The lead agency is required to provide an entire continuum of services, for all needs of every
referred client, even if that means that the lead agency must subcontract to other service
providers.




Revised November 23, 2009
                               RFP Public Meeting Questions

Q1: There is a discrepancy in the RFP as to the number of copies of the proposal that
must be submitted (5 or 8) Which is correct?
A: 5 proposals are required. The definitions section of the RFP is generic to all RFP postings for
the province and as a result the information contained there are examples and are not specific to
this RFP. This feedback will be taken back to the provincial body responsible for developing
RFP definitions.


Q2: Could you please clarify the criteria that will be used to evaluate, or the expectations
around the content of, the Schedule A.
A: The evaluation criteria are identified on Page 19 of the posted RFP. Please ensure that all
information that you believe to be relevant to your proposal is included. The review panel will
make no assumptions about your agency or your proposal, so please ensure it is comprehensive.

Q3: Given the amendment to the RFP will it still be possible for the selected lead agency
to expand services beyond the Lloydminster site?
A: There will be additional RFPs to service future areas. Proposals must be submitted through
those future RFP processes to provide services to other areas.

Q4: How will the caseload start on January 1, 2010 in the Lloydminster CRC catchment
area? Would it be an inherited full caseload as the CRC is currently carrying, or will it be
transition of the caseload to the successful Proponent.
A: On Page 16 of the posted RFP, under 4.6 - Budget, Phase 1, it states, “The successful
Proponent will be advanced $15,000 for Phase 1 planning under a Consultant Contract.”
Caseload transition will be negotiated during Phase 1.

Q5: With the new Casework Practice Model, there will be a 5 day intake, 10 day safety
phase and assessment period would the agency be expected to be part of this decision of
whether the situation is Family Enhancement or Child Protection or when would the
agency start in the process?
A: Preliminary thinking is that involvement should begin for the agency at the onset of a primary
legal authority in either the Family Enhancement or Protection streams, or following the Detailed
Assessment Phase. This is not confirmed, and may be part of the Phase 1 development and
negotiation.

Q6: Does the Consultant Agreement need to be sent with the Proposal?
A: No, the Consultant Agreement was provided as an example only and will be signed between
the CFSA and the successful Proponent.

Q7: If agencies are going to be partnering, do they have to determine a Lead Agency?
A: We intend to contract with one agency only. That agency is the clear Lead Agency. If the
Lead Agency wishes to partner with other agencies, it must be done through sub-contracting,
which is a legal relationship.




Revised November 23, 2009
Q8: Do you want the current Schedule A format followed, and all the areas listed
completed (Grievance Process, Appeal Process etc.)?
A: No, the proposal should be submitted using the format the RFP outlines under section 4.4,
Project/Services Scope (Page 14/15). The contract details, including the Schedule A, will follow
when the successful Proponent is selected.

Q9: Do you need to see examples of the data collection system that will be used?
A: The RFP asks in 5.4.2.2 that Proponents provide a description of how they plan to meet the
required results for outcomes measures and targets. Use of examples to facilitate the description
is the choice of the Proponent.

Q10: Once the successful Proponent has started offering services and they need to add
additional sub contractors, can they, and what would the process be? Will this process be
any different if the sub contractor is out of region?
A: The CFSA does not dictate who the Lead Agency subcontracts with or on what terms. The
subcontract process will be the sole responsibility of the Lead Agency. The Lead Agency will be
responsible for ensuring that the performance of the subcontractor is consistent with the
expectations/results required of the Lead Agency.

Q11: Currently the situation is that CFSA in this region recruits, places and monitors
Foster Care, what will be the responsibility of the successful Proponent in this area (also
with Kinship and Adoptions)
A: These are transitional issues that will be negotiated during Phase 1.

Q12: What will be the expected process of those youth in rare and exceptional
circumstances where they are not able to return home or appropriate foster care is not
possible?
A: The process used under exceptional circumstances will not vary from the usual Case Work
Practice Model process.

Q13: Will funding change as youth moves through different stages Intensive treat, Group
Care, SIL?
A: The rate is based on an average cost per child of children across all services, and is tied to the
achievement of outcomes. The rate is a fixed rate and will not change based on placement.

Q14: Casework Practice Model is referred to often. Where is that specific information?
A: On Page 6 of the RFP, a link is provided to Alberta’s Case Work Practice Model.
http://www.child.alberta.ca/home/documents/rpt_06_Casework_Practice_Model.pdf. Further
information and links to the East Central Alberta CFSA website are available through
http://www.child.gov.ab.ca

Q15: Is there a measurement framework tool (3.1 page 9) available at present?
A: No. Outcomes and evaluation reporting tools are under development and not available at this
time. Development of regional tools and strategies may be part of Phase 1 negotiation. The draft
Outcomes Based Service Delivery - Outcomes Measurement Overview is posted on the East
Central Alberta CFSA website.




Revised November 23, 2009
Q16: The interested parties are not legally bound together at this point, although that
would be our intention. Would signatures from each partnership company be sufficient
for contracting purposes?
A: Partnership signatures will not be sufficient for contracting purposes. One Lead Agency must
be identified, and formal subcontracting must occur with additional agencies. Should your
agencies choose to amalgamate, that must occur through a legal process as well.

Q17: When we’re together, we talk, “What if we get the contract” scenarios in
anticipation of what we’d need to hit the ground running. One of our anticipated needs
might be staffing for the generalist positions (depending on the pilot project size). Would
it look improper to put feelers out in Lloyd at this point in time?
A: Phase 1, from January to March 2010 will be a planning phase that will allow sufficient time
for the successful Proponent to build capacity to deliver services via partnerships or building
capacity of the Lead Agency. Recruiting or hiring staff at this time is premature and not required.



If you have any other questions that have not been addressed above, please send them in
writing to Pam Goodwin at pam.goodwin@gov.ab.ca




Revised November 23, 2009

								
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