WellFlorida News Release
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (August 26, 2013)—Healthy Start of North Central Florida (HSNCF) announced this Monday an immediate expansion of services offered through the support of a federally awarded grant provided by the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (MIECHV).
For over 20 years, Healthy Start of North Central Florida has continued to provide free prenatal and postpartum services to women and their children up to the age of three within 12 North Central Florida counties. The addition of MIECHV supported funding allows HSNCF to elevate the intensity and availability of its current services to families living within Alachua, Bradford and Putnam counties with in-depth voluntary home visiting programs.
Of HSNCF’s 12 counties served, Alachua, Bradford and Putnam Counties are the first to receive MIECHV funding based on the process of a needs assessment, identifying key indicators such as population, accessibility and availability of resources. As identified through the needs assessment, HSNCF’s seeks to offset the challenges of these counties by expanding evidence-based home visiting services throughout the communities.
Julie Moderie, program director for HSNCF, stated, “As a nonprofit organization functioning within these communities since 1992, we are excited to expand our reach and positively impact families through these voluntary parenting education and support services.”
All 12 counties served by HSNCF offer classes and education on breastfeeding, infant safety, pregnancy, parenting and assistance to become tobacco free. Those interested in learning more about Healthy Start or wish to refer themselves into the home visiting program are encouraged to ask their healthcare provider, midwife, nurse or hospital doctor for a Healthy Start screen at their next appointment. Individuals may also contact a care coordinator within their respective counties: Alachua (386) 334-7940, Bradford (904) 964-7732 and Putnam (386) 328-0108 or visit www.healthystartncf.org.
About Healthy Start:
Healthy Start is a free program offered in the state of Florida to pregnant women and their children up to the age of three regardless of economic or immigration status. The goal of Healthy Start is to reduce infant mortality, reduce the number of low weight births, and improve health and developmental outcomes.