January 22, 2015 (COLUMBUS) – A program to connect at-risk expectant mothers with care and supports has been set in motion to combat Ohio’s unacceptably high infant mortality rates thanks to the championing and foresight of Governor John Kasich and Senators Shannon Jones and Charleta Tavares.
Swiftly moving on a promise made at the statewide Infant Mortality Summit to address Ohio’s crisis-level infant mortality rate – the third highest infant mortality rate in the country – the Kasich Administration in partnership with the Ohio Association of Community Health Centers released a Request for Proposals today among Ohio’s Community Health Centers to identify and fund research based best-practice methods of group care for expectant mothers in both urban and rural communities.
In light of Ohio’s current rates of infant deaths, the Board of Directors of the OACHC recently and unanimously voted to designate prenatal care a targeted priority for the Association in 2015.
“Ohio’s Community Health Centers are advanced primary care practices already located in areas of high-need, high poverty, and higher than average infant mortality rates, which makes them uniquely positioned to be on the ground floor of this pilot project, well positioned to make a significant impact, ” stated Julie DiRossi-King, Chief Operating Officer of the Ohio Association of Community Health Centers. DiRossi-King went on to say, “While our rates of infant deaths are frightening, thanks to the vision and leadership of Governor Kasich and Senators Jones and Tavares, we have a clear path forward for change. Ohio’s Community Health Centers are eager to begin implementation of Centering Pregnancy Program and see more Ohio babies reach their first birthdays.”...
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