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PLEASE NOTE: In June 2009, the Consortium closed and is no longer accepting new members. The following is provided for reference only.

Frequently Asked Questions
about Consortium Membership

Who is eligible for membership?
Membership in the Consortium is open to anyone living or working in Massachusetts with an interest in collaborative solutions to improving the health care system for children with special health care needs.

How do I become a Consortium member?
Please read the Consortium's membership statement.  If we may count you as a Consortium member, send an e-mail message to -- with New Member in the subject line and your name and contact information in the body of the message. Don't forget to let us know your e-mail preferences here.

Is there a cost?
Membership is free; there are no dues or meeting fees. (Please note that pre-registration may be required to attend meetings, however.) Stipends may be available for parents of CSHCN who are not otherwise compensated for time spent participating in Consortium activities; contact us for details.

How often are meetings held?
The full Consortium holds meetings several times per year. Work Group and Steering Committee meetings are scheduled throughout the year.

What are Consortium meetings like?
In accordance with our core values, Consortium meetings are structured to be welcoming, respectful, inclusive, and conducive to participation. Come in casual or business dress. Coffee and tea are usually served.

Each two- to two-and-a-half-hour meeting of the full Consortium focuses on a main topic or theme, with related presentations. Examples from the past year include: Compassionate Care in the Medical Home; Health Insurance and Children with Special Health Care Needs; and Achieving a Statewide System of Care Coordination.

Agenda items are each in one of the following categories:

Information – A brief item (10-minute maximum);
minimal discussion is expected.

Education – A presentation expected to expand members’ understanding of the system of care for CSHCN and their families. Guided discussion is expected, often in a small-group format.

Action – An item presented by a member(s) of the Consortium, under the sponsorship of one of the Work Groups, for active consideration by the full Consortium. Action or decision may be requested. Discussion is essential to full consideration.

Any slides or materials used in a presentation are provided as handouts for easy reference. Multiple perspectives are included on all topics whenever possible. Physicians, parents of children with special health care needs, and state agency and health plan representatives are often asked to comment or respond to presentations.

A few minutes at the end of every meeting are devoted to updates and announcements from members.

Who sets the agendas for Consortium meetings?
Agendas grow out of formal and informal input from Consortium members and work groups. The Steering Committee is responsible for planning, organizing, and reviewing agendas for future meetings.

Where are meetings held?
Meetings of the full Consortium are held at a number of different sites. Past sites have included the Blue Cross Foundation at the Landmark Center in Boston, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care at the Gateway Facility in Wellesley, and Brandeis University in Waltham. We’ll always let you know the location of a meeting on the Consortium's home page and in our e-mail announcements. Join the Consortium’s e-mail list here.

Work group meetings are often held at New England SERVE’s office in downtown Boston, but are sometimes held at other locations.

How do I join a work group?
For information about joining a specific work group, please contact the work group chair directly.