The MCH Innovations Database is a searchable repository of “what’s working” in MCH that includes effective practices, programs, and strategies from the field that are positively impacting MCH populations. Practices in the database are assessed along a Practice Continuum and receive a designation of Cutting-Edge, Emerging, Promising, or Best Practice depending on the level of evidence demonstrating a practice’s impact, among other criteria. AMCHP defines evidence holistically according to the following definition to capture the full-breadth of information and practice-based insights that can support the effectiveness of an intervention:


Evidence in public health can be broadly defined as anything that demonstrates a given initiative is having its intended impact for a specific community or population. Recognizing that public health work happens in “real world” settings, evidence in the public health field is inherently practice-based. What public health considers evidence is not limited to the best available scientific research evidence; it also emphasizes and values community-defined evidence and the values, needs, and preferences of those with lived experience. 


MCH Innovations Practice continuum

Learn more about the criteria for each designation by clicking the dropdowns below or check out our Minimum Criteria Checklist.

A Cutting-Edge Practice is one that:

  • Addresses a clearly defined community need
  • Positively impacts its target MCH population
  • Advances health equity
  • Meaningfully engages stakeholders
  • Shows initial signs of success

An Emerging Practice is one that addresses all of the criteria of a Cutting-Edge Practice, as well as:

  • Has a strong logical and theoretical foundation​
  • Has developed an evaluation plan​
  • Identifies and uses lessons learned for continuous improvement efforts

A Promising Practice is one that addresses all of the previous criteria, as well as:

  • Presents evaluation data that demonstrates positive outcomes for the target population
  • Conducts continuous quality improvement efforts
  • Identifies and assesses unintended results
  • Considers potential biases​ in how the practice is conducted

A Best Practice is one that addresses all of the previous criteria, as well as:

  • Meaningfully engages stakeholders at all level of practice​
  • Has been externally validated by another entity​
  • Has been replicated with similar positive results in another context

To ensure all practices contribute to improving health equity as an integral component of overall program sustainability, AMCHP has aligned the criteria on the evidence continuum to evaluate practices with a variety of equity assessments, including the Racial Equity Impact AssessmentIs My Implementation Practice Culturally Responsive ChecklistFoundational Practices for Health EquityRace Equity and Inclusion Action Guide, and the MCH Leadership Competencies