September 01, 2022
Deidre McCabe, Director, Office of Communications, 410-767-3536
Chase Cook, Deputy Director for Media Relations, 410-767-8649
Maryland Department of Health expands maternal and child home visiting
Four organizations to split $865,622 during year one of a three-year expansion
Baltimore, MD – The Maryland Department of Health (MDH) announced more than $865,000 in grant funding going to four organizations to expand evidence-based home visiting services to pregnant people and parents with young children.
The funding, made available by the Health Services Cost Review Commission to support the Statewide Integrated Health Improvement Strategy (SIHIS), is part of a three-year home visiting expansion that will provide more than $2.26 million in total grant funding between August 15, 2022, and June 30, 2025.
Home visiting is a voluntary family support program driven by referrals from providers, hospitals, local health departments and community-based organizations. The program promotes infant and child health, fosters educational development and school readiness, and helps prevent child abuse and neglect. Home visits by trained professionals provide families with parenting information, resources and support from the time of pregnancy through a child’s first two to five years of life.
Photo and video courtesy of Baltimore Healthy Start
“Home visiting supports pregnant parents and families with the resources and skills they need to raise physically, socially and emotionally healthy children,” said Dr. Jinlene Chan, MDH’s Deputy Secretary for Public Health Services. “Expanding home visiting will help vulnerable families who face added parenting challenges like postpartum depression and the lack of social and financial support create healthier, positive environments for their new baby, growing child and the entire family.”
Evidence-based home visiting models undergo rigorous evaluation and have been shown to improve maternal and child health by connecting families to essential community services. Participants receive in-home education, case management and referrals to services based on their individualized needs, including prenatal care access, well-baby checkups, postpartum support, safe sleep training, child injury prevention, and early language and literacy skill development.
Home visiting expansion is part of the state’s efforts to address disparities that impact maternal and child health, particularly in at-risk communities. Data shows Black women are at the highest risk for maternal mortality and morbidity. Black women are three times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related cause than White women, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Babies born to Non-Hispanic Black women are twice as likely to die before their first birthday.
Maryland home visiting expansion funds will support programs in high-priority areas where elevated numbers of severe maternal morbidity are prominent, including Baltimore City, Anne Arundel, Montgomery and Washington Counties. MDH will provide year-one funding to the following programs:
Baltimore Healthy Start (BHS) will partner with Chase Braxton Glen Burnie Health Center to expand home visiting services to postpartum women in Anne Arundel County. The program will use the Great Kids curriculum, designed for home visits beginning in the gestational stage of pregnancy. Families will be offered standard BHS case management and care coordination services through the Chase Brexton-based Medication Assisted Treatment for Substance Use Disorder program.
Montgomery County Health Department will expand the Babies Born Healthy (BBH) program using the March of Dimes Becoming Mom (BAM) curriculum. BAM improves maternal knowledge through a community-based collaborative model of care, prenatal education and quality prenatal care. BBH will serve high-risk pregnant people beginning at any stage in their pregnancy and follow the mother and infant until the child turns six months of age.
The Family Tree will expand home visiting services in Baltimore City through the Parents as Teachers (PAT) model. Home visitors make regular visits from prenatal through kindergarten age. The PAT curriculum focuses on mental health, nutrition, maternal depression, substance use and domestic violence.
Washington County Health Department will expand existing home visiting services through the local program affiliate of Healthy Families America. The program will offer services to families starting prenatally and continuing through the child’s fifth birthday. Watch a Healthy Families America home visiting success story.
Maternal and child health is a top population health priority for the state. It is a primary focus of Maryland’s SIHIS, a coordinated public-private initiative to improve health, reduce disparities, and transform healthcare delivery. To learn more about MDH’s efforts to improve the health of families statewide, visit https://health.maryland.gov/phpa/mch/Pages/home.aspx.
For more information about Maryland home visiting programs, visit
The Maryland Department of Health is dedicated to protecting and improving the health and safety of all Marylanders through disease prevention, access to care, quality management and community engagement.
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