Behavioral Health Navigator Program

Pediatric Behavioral Health Navigator Program

The Tallahassee Pediatric Behavioral Health Center (Center) is a strategic initiative by Whole Child Leon in partnership with the Tallahassee Pediatric Foundation (TPF). The Center was created to improve access to quality behavioral health services for children and their families through integrated health practices. The Center’s flagship program is the Behavioral Health Navigator Program.

Finding the right mental and behavioral health assistance for a child can be difficult, overwhelming and time-consuming. Our Pediatric Behavioral Health Navigators (BHNs) are trained clinicians who work directly with community providers and partners to ensure quality behavioral health services are available and accessible when families need them. The BHN services are free of change and available to children, 0-21 years, who have a primary care medical home in Leon County.

The BHNs use a child-centered approach to assist families in developing a tailored and comprehensive treatment plan, addressing the needs of the whole child and the whole family. To ensure success, BHNs work with families to address any barriers that limit access to quality care. In addition, BHNs regularly communicate with the child’s referring primary care physician so services and care are fully integrated between the Center and the doctor’s office.

If you’ve been referred to the Center for Behavioral Health Navigation, here is what to expect:

  • Our team will call you within five days of receiving the referral and schedule your appointment to meet with a BHN, at no cost. We utilize a confidential ‘intake’ process to help identify what services may be the best fit for your child’s needs.
  • The BHN will then connect your family to quality behavioral health services and provide additional support recommendations based in your unique needs, insurance and family preference.
  • The BHN will remain in contact with your family and the identified health care providers to ensure the ‘match’ was successful or to reevaluate as necessary.
  • The BHN will also keep your doctor informed.

If you think you could benefit from Behavioral Health Navigation, here’s what to do:

We currently do not accept self-referrals. Ask your child’s pediatrician or primary care physician for a referral to the Tallahassee Pediatric Behavioral Health Center. If you do not currently have a primary care physician, please call (850) 692-3134.

Meet Our Team

Cori McGooden, LCSW
Services Coordinator

Cori not only works with Whole Child Leon in as the Clinical Supervisor for the Tallahassee Pediatric Behavioral Health Navigator Program, but is also the Service Coordinator for the Open Doors Outreach Network. She is also an associate professor at Florida State University and works with Florida State University Primary Health as the behavioral health consultant, collaborating with medical professionals to provide an integrated approach to family medicine. She is also working on a special project with Florida’s Department of Children and Families in central Florida, providing behavioral health training to Child Protection Investigators.

J’ere Clark
Behavioral Heath Navigator Lead

J’ere Clark is a Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University and Florida State University Alumna with a focus in Clinical Social Work. J’ere has work experience in the areas of Child Welfare, Human Trafficking and working directly with Children and Families. J’ere is currently a Registered Clinical Social Work Intern pursuing Clinical Licensure.

Caroline Gardner
Behavioral Health Navigator

Caroline Gardner is a Tallahassee native and Florida State University Almuna. She received her Master’s degree in Social Work along with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Throughout her MSW experience, Caroline worked with the College of Social Work’s Youth’s Arts and Athletes Program as a mentor. Caroline loves working with children and families. As one of our Behavioral Health Navigators, Caroline helps connect these families with quality behavioral health services and provide additional support recommendations based on their needs.