By: Valerie Crow, Cobb & Douglas Public Health
Cobb & Douglas Public Health (CDPH) has been awarded up to $5.5 million over the next five years through a Healthy Start grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The purpose of the grant is to improve health outcomes before, during, and after pregnancy for at-risk populations; and to reduce racial and ethnic infant death disparities and negative health outcomes in the first 18 months of life.
To qualify for funding, communities had to have infant mortality rates at least 1.5 times the U.S. national average. Within the CDPH district, at-risk populations were identified in the South Cobb County area as well as in the City of Douglasville. The grant will support a wide range of services for women, children, and families, including: healthcare coordination; case management; linkage to social services; screening and counseling for alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use; breastfeeding support; inter-conception education; child development education; and parenting support.
“We are very excited and humbled to have received this grant,” says CDPH District Health Director Janet Pak Memark, MD, MPH, FACP. “We look forward to helping our community, especially women experiencing high rates of poverty, limited access to care, and other socioeconomic factors that can prevent them from having healthy pregnancies and raising healthy children.”
In addition to decreasing infant mortality and removing barriers to healthcare, Healthy Start funding will strengthen the health workforce, build a more effective and efficient service-delivery system, and promote and improve health equity across participating organizations. Organizations partnering with CDPH in this initiative include, but are not limited to, Cobb & Douglas Community Services Board, Georgia Health Policy Center, TIME-ER, Inc., WellStar Health System, Kennesaw State University, the Live Healthy Douglas Coalition, and the Cobb2020 Coalition.
For more information about services at Cobb & Douglas Public Health, please visit www.cobbanddouglaspublichealth.org or call 770-514-2300.
About HRSA (Health Resources & Services Administration)
The Health Resources and Services Administration is an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services located in North Bethesda, Maryland. It is the primary federal agency for improving access to health care services for people who are uninsured, isolated or medically vulnerable. In March 2019 HRSA awarded over $100 million in Healthy Start grants to improve pregnancy outcomes and reduce infant mortality across the U.S.
About Cobb & Douglas Public Health
Cobb & Douglas Public Health, along with the Georgia Department of Public Health, has been committed to the mission of “Healthier Lives. Healthier Community.” since 1920. We are dedicated to improving our residents’ quality of life by tracking and preventing the spread of disease, promoting health and safety, providing exceptional medical services, and ensuring that our community is prepared for public health emergencies. For more information, visit www.cobbanddouglaspublichealth.org.