Giving Families A Healthy Start
Wednesday - March 03, 2010 Share
By Jackie Berry, MPH, Executive Director
Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies
Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies Coalition of Hawaii (HMHB) is a 25-year-old small, local nonprofit agency and part of a national network of organizations and individuals committed to improving maternal, child and family health through education, advocacy and coordination.
We model a strong coalition approach for public and private partnership projects that work to improve perinatal health. Over the years, HMHB has worked on many projects, including promoting planned pregnancies, improving access to healthcare and addressing concerns around substance abuse.
One of the rewarding achievements was playing a pivotal role in the establishment of The Path Clinic. It is the only comprehensive perinatal addiction clinic in Hawaii, and it began providing services in April 2006 through funds obtained by HMHB. Since opening, more than 160 women from all areas of Oahu have received services, and 78 women have delivered babies with the clinic.
The birth outcomes of women who receive services at The Path Clinic are far better than average state and national outcomes for all births - despite the high risk for adverse birth outcomes these women face because of poverty, being a racial minority, high rates of medical comorbid conditions (multiple chronic conditions) and substance abuse. Pregnancy provides a “teachable moment,” and these women are working to improve their lives with the help of clinic staff.
Our only direct service is Mothers Care, a free confidential telephone line, to offer information and referrals to women on prenatal care, pregnancy testing services, medical insurance, the Women Infants and Children Food program and more.
The number for our Mothers Care line is 951-6660 on Oahu, 1-888-951-6661 on the Neighbor Islands. We also have a Web site, http://www.hmhb-hawaii.org, with many local resources.
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