HMHB Receives Funding from Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority for Postpartum Care Project
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: PRESS ADVISORY
CONTACT: Mica Whitfield – 678-302-1130
May 22, 2019 – Atlanta, GA – Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia (HMHB), in partnership with Bellies to Babies (B2B), is pleased to announce it has received a $40,000 grant from the Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority.
“The Fulton DeKalb Hospital Authority is proud to support the Community Health Initiative Partnership Grant to Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies and Bellies to Babies,” says Dr. Keri Norris, Chief of Health Policy & Administration at the FDHA. “The grant process was vigorous and competitive, these partners offered a promising collaborative initiative to reach, educate and empower mothers. Given the dire need to address maternal child health in Georgia and poorer health outcomes for indigent pregnant women, we are excited about this partnership and the promising practices we expect from this effort.”
These funds will be used to implement the Postpartum Education and Care Project to integrate community-based interventions for postpartum care that will reduce maternal mortality and improve access to family planning services. The partnership with Bellies to Babies Foundation for this project merges the efforts of HMHB and B2B to provide access to care and reduce maternal mortality in Fulton and DeKalb.
Across Fulton and DeKalb Counties, black women died nine times more often than white women during pregnancy or during the year following delivery in 2017. The dismaying birth outcomes of women within in Fulton and Dekalb counties, in conjunction with the increased need for community based approaches to postpartum care and education, presented an opportunity for this HMHB-B2B partnership.
“We are excited to partner with HMHB and to receive much needed support for really important work being done to improve perinatal outcomes,” says Corinna Edwards, Executive Director of Bellies to Babies Foundation.
The project will bring together services and resources to improve postpartum education in Fulton and DeKalb counties for women and families of color and those uninsured or enrolled in Medicaid.
The four components of the project are:
- Postpartum toolkit development and distribution: HMHB will develop a user-friendly postpartum toolkit geared toward obstetric providers and prenatal educators, with a goal to increase the capacity of obstetric care providers and educators to educate women on postpartum warning signs and resources.
- Planning for Healthy Babies (P4HB): P4HB provides family planning and related services to eligible women ages 18 through 44, at or below 200% FPL, and inter-pregnancy care services including primary care and primary care case management for eligible women who have delivered a very low birth weight baby (VLBW) baby. HMHB will create marketing materials for P4HB to increase enrollment and utilization.
- Mobile Postpartum Café: Bellies to Babies will continue operating the mobile postpartum café to screen women for depression, hypertension, risk of hemorrhage, nutrition needs, infant feeding needs & overall baby health, and refer postpartum women in Fulton and DeKalb counties.
- Friends of MOM– community educators and peer support: HMHB and B2B will collaborate with Morehouse School of Medicine, March of Dimes, faith-based organizations, and prominent fraternities and sororities in the Black communities of Atlanta to organize two family-friendly summits that will train these groups on addressing preventable maternal deaths, with a specific focus on postpartum education. Equipped with evidence-based tools, HMHB will provide congregations and fraternal organizations with the necessary training they need to empower their parishioners and members.
When women receive pregnancy Medicaid in Georgia, their coverage ends six weeks from the date of delivery. The drop-off in coverage makes it difficult for women to access critical care during the postpartum period. Georgia’s Maternal Mortality Review Committee found in the most recent case review that in cases from 2012-2014, 78% of maternal deaths occurred after 42 days and up to one year after the end of pregnancy.
“Our 2018 study revealed that the majority of women in Georgia are not receiving any kind of postpartum education or support,” says Elise Blasingame, Executive Director of Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia. “We aim to change this dynamic through our strategic partnership with Bellies2Babies and Fulton-DeKalb Hospital Authority.”