Helping new mothers in poverty access care, support and education

Los Angeles-based Adventist Health White Memorial has increased access to prenatal, postpartum and pediatric care for local women living below the poverty line. The hospital’s no-cost hospital and home-visitation program is called Welcome Baby.

Welcome Baby works with families to maximize the health, safety and security of their newborns, and facilitates access to additional support services, such as food banks and educational programs.

Through various prenatal visits, a hospital visit and several postpartum home visits, Welcome Baby provides individual support and information on parenting, early child development, bonding and attachment, health care, nutrition, breastfeeding and home safety. 

Since Welcome Baby’s 2013 launch, the rate of mothers who initiated breastfeeding at Adventist Health White Memorial has risen from 67 percent in 2014 to 89 percent in 2017. Of those who initiated breastfeeding in the hospital, 75 percent continued to breastfeed. 

Learn more about the program here

Overcoming infant mortality in Detroit

Faced with one of the highest infant mortality rates in the nation, Detroit’s Henry Ford Health System, Detroit Medical Center, Beaumont-Dearborn Healthcare System, and St. John Providence Health System created the Detroit Regional Infant Mortality Reduction Task Force and, more specifically, the Women-Inspired Neighborhood (WIN) Network to help more babies celebrate and thrive beyond their first years.

Through WIN, community health workers guided pregnant women and new mothers through a safety net of social, emotional and clinical supports. The workers also conducted home visits through babies’ first birthdays and beyond. The program also supports nonpregnant women in their communities and online. 

Since its inception in 2008, WIN has served 364 African American women between the ages of 18 and 34, who, as a result, had zero preventable infant deaths and better-than-average rates of pre-term and low-birthweight deliveries. The program also helped more than 1,000 non-pregnant women improve knowledge around infant mortality, health literacy, healthy living and family planning; and it provided health care equity training to more than 500 providers and health professionals.

Learn more about the program here.

Promoting perinatal care collaboration, guidance and best practices through multiple disciplines

The Northern New England Perinatal Quality Improvement Network (NNEPQIN) — a voluntary consortium of 43 organizations throughout New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine involved in perinatal care — fosters interdisciplinary collaboration, shares best practices and promotes safety while reducing risk within perinatal care. The consortium includes hospitals, state health departments, professional midwifery organizations and the March of Dimes.

The 16-year-old program, based at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, N.H., has ultimately facilitated the collection of high-quality population health data to improve clinical and supportive services for women and their infants, enabling the New Hampshire Division of Public Health Services to study and address maternal mortality and maternal morbidity. The program also helped Exeter (N.H.) Hospital to reduce its early-elective delivery rate from 30 percent to zero using NNEPQIN’s vaginal-birth-after-a-caesarean resources. In addition, the consortium offers a toolkit and checklist for the perinatal care of women with opioid use disorders. Eight sites piloted these resources in 2016 through 2017. After assessing the toolkit’s use, NNEPQIN found significant changes in naloxone prescribing and marijuana and tobacco use during pregnancy, as well as positive trends in Hepatitis C testing and third-trimester drug use.

Learn more about NNEPQIN and its impact.

Related News Articles

  The phrase “liberty and justice, for all” from the Pledge of Allegiance is intended to be just that – for all. But our country’s history shows that it hasn’…
A new special issue of Health Services Research highlights cutting-edge research from experts in age-friendly care. All articles are free and…
States, territories, health facilities and tribal organizations can apply through March 27 for up to $525,000 million each for residential treatment programs…
According to the CDC, 80% of pregnancy-related deaths can be prevented; that’s a 20% increase from previous years. Know why? That’s actually the theme for…
In recognition of today’s Maternal Health Awareness Day, Aisha Syeda, senior program manager for AHA’s work on maternal health, highlights strategies health…
I’m often asked, “Why did you choose a career in health care?” My “why” has always been to help people and to make a difference. A career in health care was…