Place Category: Non-Profit Organization
The birth of a child presents a unique opportunity to ensure a healthy start for the baby and the family. The weeks right after delivery are ideal for reaching out, connecting with and engaging new parents. Newborn infants are susceptible to many preventable health and environmental risks, but parents often lack the information and support they need to reduce risks and promote the healthy development of their babies.
New York City’s free and voluntary Newborn Home Visiting Program ensures that newborns get a healthy start by providing parents with guidance, information and support directly in their homes. During the home visit, the Health Department worker provides information on health issues for mother and baby, including breastfeeding, safe sleep practices, bonding and attachment, smoking cessation, post-partum depression, health insurance, and the importance of finding a regular health care provider. The health workers also screen new mothers for potential health or social needs and assess the home for potential hazards such as peeling lead-based paint, missing or improperly installed window guards, missing smoke and/or carbon monoxide detectors, and pests. After conducting these assessments, the worker helps the mother gain access to needed services from government agencies or community-based organizations.
The program is now available to new parents in communities in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Manhattan.
The Newborn Home Visiting Program:
* Offers information on infant health and child safety
* Conducts an environmental assessment (for lead paint, window guards and baby-proofing)
* Responds to parents’ questions about nutrition, breastfeeding and cognitive and social/emotional development
* Raises awareness about available community resources
* Arranges pediatric care where developmental screenings and early detection of problems can take place
* Provides information on tax credits and community programs
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