Substance abuse among pregnant women poses as an immediate threat to the health of unborn infants. The effects of alcohol and drug abuse by a pregnant mother have can have devastating health consequences to both women and their unborn baby. It’s for this reason that WVP Health Authority has set up the MOMS program.
The MOMS program is a comprehensive case management program targeting pregnant women at risk of substance abuse in Marion Polk and Yamhill counties. The MOMS Program aims to ensure universal prenat
al care and to provide pregnant women with the tools they need to stay clean and sober during and after pregnancy. The primary goal is the delivery of clean and sober babies. Ideally, secondary goals include helping mothers maintain a lifestyle of sobriety conducive to successfully parenting their child or children in a safe, healthy, and sober home environment.
How it works
The program has two components to it, before and after the birth:
As soon as a high-risk pregnant woman is identified to WVP Health Authority, she is assigned a mentor and a home visit is scheduled usually within one week. The mentors meet each woman in her home to discuss the program and admit her. Each participant is fully informed of all expectations of the program before she gives consent. She initials all expectations and both she and the mentor sign the contract. The mentor is then responsible for helping the woman identify what services she needs and how best to use them.
Women remain in the MOMS Program after their baby is born until other adjunct components are in place, including housing, WIC, court, parole, education or finding a job, establishing medical care for her new baby, and childcare. Mothers have access to the Baby Boutique to acquire basic needs for their babies at reduced or no cost, including car seat, feeding supplies, clothing, and bedding. Many participating clients find housing in one of several group homes in the area or with assistance from the housing authority. Mothers graduate when she and her mentor agree she is ready, usually 3 to 6 months after delivery. They are encouraged to remain involved in the program to share their success and help other women. This helps create a sobriety oriented social network where she may share her experience, hope, strength, and mentorship with others.