Healthy Moms. Healthy Babies. Strong Community.
Infants dying before their first birthday (infant mortality rate) is a critical indicator of a community’s health. It reflects the state of maternal health, and the quality and accessibility of primary health care available to pregnant women and infants. Indiana has infant mortality rates higher (7.8 per 1,000) than the national average (5.89 per 1,000). One zip code in Allen County, 46806, has the third highest infant mortality rate amongst all Indiana zip codes and most significantly impacted within the neighborhood are the African-American teen moms living there.
Every Baby Born Healthy
Healthier Moms and Babies (HMB) is a local program responding to this crisis. This organization's goal is to reduce infant mortality and improve the outcome of pregnancy in Allen County by offering health education and case management services to low-income, high-risk pregnant women and their families. In 2017, they served 288 pregnant women, most of whom lived in the highest risk neighborhoods. All their new moms were at-risk medically or psychosocially for a poor outcome.
HMB’s staff of professional nurses and social workers made 1,358 home visits meeting one-on-one regularly with each new mom. During these visits, they educated moms on the causes of infant mortality. They empowered them with knowledge on proper nutrition, signs of preterm labor, kick counts, breastfeeding, and safe sleep. They also connected them with local resources over 200 times including access to mental health care, food, clothing, housing, and prenatal care.