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Black Infant Health  (BIH) Program  

Mother kissing sleeping infant

Experts believe that social, economic and racial stresses play an important role in poor birth outcomes—babies born too early and too small—for African-American women. Within a culturally affirming environment and honoring the unique history of African-American women, Black Infant Health (BIH) aims to help women have healthy babies. Participants learn proven strategies to reduce stress and develop life skills. This is accomplished through a group-based approach with complementary case management. The group experience builds social support, which helps buffer the negative effects of stress and empowers participants to make positive choices in their life. Weekly group sessions help women access their own strengths and set health-promoting goals for themselves and their babies. Ultimately, this approach will impact not only themselves, but future generations of African-American women, infants and families.

Program Profile

OUR GOAL: To improve African-American infant and maternal health, as well as decrease Black-White health inequities and social inequities for women and infants. .

WHO WE SERVE: African-American women who are 18 years or older and up to 30 weeks pregnant at the time of enrollment.

SERVICE DELIVERY: Services are provided by Family Health Advocates, Group Facilitators, Public Health Nurses and Social Workers. 

OUTCOMES: Current science supports an empower-ment-focused, group-based intervention as a promising strategy for improving African-American women’s birth outcomes. BIH participants report.

  • Stronger positive connections to their heritage and the African-American women in their community
  • Increased empowerment to make behavior changes that lead to living a healthier life
  • Better understanding of effective stress-reduction strategies

FUNDING: Federal Title V MCH Block Grant Funds, Federal Title XIX (Medicaid) Funds and State General Funds.

  • Infant Mortality
  • Low-Birth Rates
  • Neonatal...
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