To improve birth outcomes, it is important to identify and treat risk factors early in pregnancy. Early detection helps to prevent and treat conditions that could be unhealthy for the pregnant individual and baby.
In support of this strategy, the Cooperative's subsidiary agency, Family Health Initiatives, directs several projects to establish risk assessment tools as a routine part of prenatal care in South Jersey. Screening tools identify individuals at high risk for fetal and infant death and refer them to appropriate home visiting programs and support to treat conditions and encourage positive pregnancy outcomes.
Perinatal Risk Assessment
To download the Perinatal Risk Assessment form, visit the PRA/SPECT website.
Family Health Initiatives was a leader in the PRA’s development and adoption by NJ Medicaid as required documentation for provider reimbursement. The PRA tool collects patient information on current and chronic medical conditions, pregnancy history and identifies behavioral and psychosocial risks. Partnering with the New Jersey Department of Children and Families as well as the New Jersey Department of Health, FHI developed referral, triage and client tracking to link with the PRA system. The risk assessment tool improves upon prenatal services by:
- Increasing referrals and enrollment in home visitation programs
- Improving upon entry time into specialty services and care
- Increasing communication and collaboration between prenatal providers and state and community agencies serving pregnant individuals
- Reducing work errors and costly duplication
The PRA is currently being used by New Jersey MIECV Home Visiting Programs and Central Intake sites. To become a user, contact us at PRA@snjpc.org.
Perinatal Addictions Prevention Project
Universal screening protects against at-risk patients being overlooked. Behavior-based risks such as substance abuse are found in all populations regardless of economic, social and educational conditions. The Perinatal Addictions Prevention Project uses PRA data to identify perinatal addictions and initiates prompt treatment for a hopeful recovery. PRA data is also used to guide decisions regarding regional program needs. Providers caring for patients struggling with perinatal addictions can turn to PAPP consultants for assistance with:
- Locating treatment facilities and services specific to a patient’s needs
- Navigating through insurance policies and coverage issues for perinatal addictions
- Consumer education materials for patients and professional conferences conducted by perinatal addictions experts
Postpartum Wellness Initiative
New Jersey law requires all pregnant individuals to be screened for postpartum depression. The Cooperative has undertaken several projects to help providers comply with this mandate including a free electronic screening system that uses netbooks to collect and transmit data. Electronic screening alleviates the staff burden and improves data access and reliability. Another key benefit is an automatic alert to the Cooperative's Postpartum Wellness Initiative team for anyone whose score indicates a risk for self harm.
To become a participating provider, contact us at PWI@snjpc.org.