Cincinnati Children’s, Every Child Succeeds and TriHealth
will share a $3.2 million grant from Bethesda Inc. that seeks to reduce our
region’s high rates of premature births and infant mortality.
“The need is urgent,” says James Pearce, Bethesda Inc. board
chairman. “Hamilton County has an infant mortality rate more than 60 percent
higher than the national average. We believe this innovative approach, in
conjunction with other programs to reduce infant mortality now underway in the
county and statewide, can result in healthier babies."
“Babies at the greatest risk of dying are those born the
earliest – the tiny, tiny babies,” says Jim Greenberg, MD, co-director of the
Perinatal Institute at Cincinnati Children’s. “If we can extend the time of
their birth by just a week, it makes a big difference.”
The plan, now being developed, seeks to transform how women
and infants receive health and social care – with guidance and participation by
moms and families. The goal is to break down barriers that keep pregnant women
and new moms from getting needed care.
“Our work will be developed hand-in-hand with moms,” said
Judith Van Ginkel, president of Every Child Succeeds. “Their voices and needs
are the driving force in the program. Our vision is to create a seamless,
community-based system for pregnant women and infants to receive health and
The program will address unmet community needs through:
- Better identification and screening of pregnant women with
higher risk for premature birth.
- Using research to map moms’ journeys from pregnancy
through the first six months of their babies’ lives.
- Linking previously unconnected health and social services.
“The more we set
aside our assumptions, the better we can encourage moms to be frank with us,”
says Michael Marcotte, MD, maternal fetal medicine specialist at TriHealth’s
Good Samaritan Hospital. “So often in health care, the health care team
decides. Now, we’re creating a much more trusting environment for women and
families, where we listen first to what they want and what they believe will
work for them.”