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AABC Strong Start Initiative for Mothers and Newborns

About the Program

AABC Strong Start was designed to give each participant the direction and support she needs during her pregnancy to feel safe, secure, and prepared to meet her healthy new baby.  The program provided birth center clients who qualified with a peer counselor in addition to the prenatal care they received at the birth center.  This extra support focused on helping participants and their families to lower stress, stay active, build family support, and maintain a healthy diet.Clients participating in Strong Start met regularly with peer counselors throughout their pregnancies to address their specific needs.  These often included access to counseling for depression and other mental issues, finding resources for food assistance, help getting maternity and baby items, and connecting with other resources in the community.


Data was collected on each client using AABC's Perinatal Data Registry (PDR) as well as a series of forms developed specifically for the program.  After four years, Strong Start has produced a rich dataset of nearly 8,800 women that AABC will use to advocate for birth centers.


The project described was supported by Funding Opportunity Number CMS-1D1-12-001 from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, and Center for Medicare & Medicaid Innovation.  The contents of this website do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS or any of its agencies.  This project does not limit a fee-for-service Medicare, Medicaid, or CHIP patient’s freedom to choose a particular health care provider.
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