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March of Dimes Healthy Babies are Worth the WaitŪ Community Program Launches at Jamaica Hospital Me

The March of Dimes celebrated the launch of its Queens Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait community program on July 16th at York College, CUNY. Jamaica Hospital Medical Center and Elmhurst Hospital Center have been chosen as the official hospital sites to implement the program, which aims to prevent preterm birth. The Queens Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait community program is conducted in partnership with Empire BlueCross BlueShield Foundation and Johnson & Johnson.

The March of Dimes Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait program provides the framework for communities to work together to prevent preterm birth by applying the "5P's"- partnerships, provider initiatives, patient support, public engagement, and progress measurement. March of Dimes has implemented Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait programs at 30 sites across five states; Kentucky, Texas, Kansas, New Jersey, and New York.

"In my experience, most women who become pregnant expect the best possible outcome even when there exist significant risk factors in their personal medical history, past obstetrical and social history that may lead to a poor outcome," said Dr. Sandra McCalla, Chair, March of Dimes New York Division Program Services Committee and Vice Chair of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Maimonides Medical Center. "Though the prematurity rate in New York State is about 10 percent and significantly greater in some New York City neighborhoods and among disadvantaged women, there is a gap in knowledge among patients and a disparate offering of available interventions known to modify the risk of recurrent or initial preterm births. The Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait program aims to combine clinical, community and innovative patient education efforts to promote awareness especially among patients; facilitate implementation of existing interventions; and thereby reducing the number of preventable premature births."


"Jamaica Hospital is very excited to be a partner in the March of Dimes Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait Program," said Mitchell Cornett, Administrator of Jamaica Hospital's Department of Ob/Gyn. "We are equally excited that we have successfully initiated group prenatal care. Mothers participating in the program are dedicated to ensuring the best possible outcomes for their babies. By including the multifaceted concept of CenteringPregnancy as a growing part of our prenatal care services, Jamaica Hospital is fulfilling its goal of increasing the rate of full-term deliveries in the communities we serve."

"Partnering with the March of Dimes for the Healthy Babies are Worth the Wait initiative allows Elmhurst to continue advancing maternal and infant health to make sure pregnant women and their babies get the health care they need right from the start," said Chris Constantino, Senior Vice President of the Queens Health Network and Executive Director of Elmhurst Hospital Center. "The staff at Elmhurst Hospital Center is committed to reducing pre-term births in Queens by educating pregnant women in our community about the importance of prenatal care, and helping them access the services they need."

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