Clinical Psychology, Oklahoma State University
Cohort Eight Fellow

Hannah Espeleta.JPG

Academic Mentor
Larry L. Mullins, PhD
Regents Professor and Vaughn Vennerbreg Chair of Psychology, Oklahoma State University

Policy Mentor
Stephen Gillaspy, PhD
Director of Research, General and Community Pediatrics, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, OU Children's Hospital

Areas of Expertise
Mixed Methods, Child Welfare and Foster Care Systems, Evidence-Based/Evidence Informed Programs


Hannah Espeleta is a doctoral student in the Clinical Psychology program at Oklahoma State University. Ms. Espeleta conducts research in collaboration with the OU Children’s Hospital at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (OUHSC), examining Pediatric Medical Homes for youth in foster care. Ms. Espeleta worked in collaboration with the Center on Child Abuse and Neglect through OUHSC where she was a part of numerous federally funded studies evaluating child abuse and neglect prevention programs, interventions for youth with problematic sexual behavior, and cultural adaptations to parenting programs. Ms. Espeleta’s research interests surround child abuse and neglect prevention and intervention efforts within hospital settings as well as cultural adaptations of these interventions.

Hannah is currently completing her clinical internship at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). Her broader clinical interests include treatment for youth with problematic sexual behavior, victims of childhood trauma, including child abuse and neglect, young children with disruptive behavior problems, and families at high-risk. Prior to graduate school, Ms. Espeleta earned her bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Criminology from Miami University of Ohio. She currently holds a master’s of science in clinical psychology from Oklahoma State University.


Fostering Hope: A Multi-Method Approach to Evaluating Pediatric Medical Homes for Youth in Foster Care

Children in foster care (FC) demonstrate physical health difficulties at disproportionally higher rates than the general population. These robust disparities, combined with a pattern of underutilization of services, place youth at heightened risk for long-term health complications in adolescence and adulthood. Development of interventions for children in FC is key for decreasing barriers to health services, increasing continuity of care, and ameliorating negative long-term outcomes. The current project will utilize a multi-method approach to evaluate the utility of Pediatric Medical Homes (PMHs) as a health intervention for youth in FC. While PMH’s have demonstrated initial success in health screening, this study will expand previous findings by examining caregiver perceptions of the medical home model and how it addresses medical needs for children in FC. Findings will address the role of medical homes for youth in FC with goals to enhance intervention efforts for children affected by child abuse and neglect.