The North Carolina Baby Love Maternal Outreach Workers (MOW) program was developed by the North Carolina Division of Maternal and Child Health, Division of Medical Assistance (Medicaid); the Office of Rural Health and Resource Development; and the Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. MOW provided supplemental home visits to families being served by the Baby Love Maternity Care Coordination and Child Service Coordination programs administered by North Carolina’s Department of Health and Human Services. The Baby Love Maternity Care Coordination program provided support services and case management to ante- and postpartum women, and the Child Service Coordination program served young children with or at risk for social, emotional, or developmental disabilities.
Implementing North Carolina Baby Love Maternal Outreach Workers Program
Implementation support is not currently available for the model as reviewed.
Last updated: March 2012
MOW was developed to provide community-based outreach and social support to women and infants who typically do not receive preventative health care services.
The program was designed at the state level to serve Medicaid-eligible pregnant women enrolled in the Baby Love Maternity Care Coordination program who were at risk for poor pregnancy and parenting outcomes. The individual MOW programs in each community set their own specific eligibility criteria from within this target population.
The overarching goal of the program was to reduce infant mortality and morbidity. To achieve this goal, the program sought to (1) increase mothers’ use of prenatal and well-child services; (2) enhance parent-child interactions; (3) support mothers’ adoption of healthy behaviors; (4) increase mothers’ use of support services, such as Medicaid and Women, Infants & Children (WIC); and, (5) support mothers’ efforts to increase the interval between pregnancies and reduce unplanned pregnancies.
State guidelines required MOWs to create a plan of care for each family, in conjunction with the families’ maternity care or child service coordinator, addressing families’ unique needs; and provide health education, emotional support, direct services, and/or referrals during monthly home visits. Within these general state guidelines, each local MOW program had the flexibility to determine the specific content of the home visits. A home visit might have included helping a family apply for services, modeling ways of interacting with an infant to foster his or her development, and supporting a mother’s problem solving efforts. MOWs were also required to spend 25 percent of their time on community outreach activities, such as making presentations to schools and civic organizations or participating in community health fairs.
MOW home visits supplemented the services families received through the Baby Love Maternity Care Coordination and Child Service Coordination programs. The Baby Love Maternity Care Coordination program offered the following services to women prenatally through 60 days postpartum: home visitation for pregnant women with high-risk medical conditions, childbirth education classes, mental health counseling, a newborn care home visit, and a home visit focused on postpartum care. The Child Service Coordination program offered services such as referrals to community resources; assistance finding financial aid; and home visits to families with young children with or at risk for social, emotional, or developmental disabilities.
Model Intensity and Length
The program provided a minimum of monthly home visits. The visits were initiated before 28 weeks’ gestation and continued to the child’s first birthday. Additional visits during the month could be scheduled based on family need.
The information contained on this page was last updated in March 2012. Recommended Further Reading lists the sources for this information.