VNA programs help parents

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Community resources

For the next several weeks, we will be highlighting six programs that support women's health and newborn care, on Saturdays in the Steamboat Today and the Craig Daily Press. It is my hope that through these programs, the continued health of this very vibrant part of Colorado will continue to grow. Some of the programs that are going to be highlighted include Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association Public Health Programs, Yampa Valley Autism Program, Newborn Network, First Impressions of Routt County, Horizon's and Steamboat Mental Health/SEED Project. I hope you take the time to read about these programs and encourage you to contact whichever you feel you might be able to utilize.

- James M. Summers, DO/MS, FACOG, Director of Inpatient Obstetrical Services, Yampa Valley Medical Center

— When it comes to community resources, the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association often is the first point of contact for expectant parents and families with young children. The VNA is the local public health provider for Routt and Moffat counties and is home to many community programs. The following is a summary of just some of the services and resources available through VNA. All programs are free unless otherwise noted.

Pre-Natal Plus

Pre-Natal Plus is a nonmedical program designed for pregnant women. The program helps individuals with Medicaid applications and other types of health-related financial assistance, teaches people how to access pre-natal medical care, provides education on healthy eating and tobacco prevention, teaches moms-to-be how to care for a new baby and answers other questions a pregnant woman might have. There is no fee for this service and no citizenship requirement.

Nurse Family Partnership

The NFP Program is a free, voluntary program for low-income women, during their first pregnancy and through the first two years of their child's life, to work with specially trained nurses on three goals: improving prenatal outcomes by helping to increase healthy behaviors, reducing use of tobacco, alcohol and illegal drugs; helping parents provide more responsible, competent care for their children; and helping them develop their future including planning future pregnancies, continuing education and finding work.

New Arrivals Home Visits

New Arrivals Home Visits provides free health education, support and community resources to families who have recently delivered an infant, in Routt and Moffat counties. Home visits are provided by a registered nurse who can help with feeding, sleep and wake patterns, irritability issues, sibling adjustment, bonding with baby and accessing financial support.

Early Periodic Screening Diagnosis and Treatment

EPSDT is a special program for people receiving Medicaid that helps you and your family understand how to access Medicaid funds for health care. You can get outreach and case management services for free if you are pregnant or have children less than 21 years of age. EPSDT helps families find out early about health care problems and get treatment for medical, dental, vision, mental health and developmental problems. All families who get Medicaid are encouraged to use these services. EPSDT can act as a link with other programs and can be the first level of client advocacy.

Health Care Program for Children with Special Needs

HCP has a goal to improve the health, development and well-being of Colorado's children with special health needs and their families. HCP serves children birth to age 21 who have, or are at risk for, serious physical, behavioral or emotional conditions. HCP works with families, providers and communities to connect kids with the care they need, and to help coordinate that care throughout time.

Children's Immunizations

This clinic provides infants, children and adults with immunizations at low cost to no cost including routine and flu vaccinations. No child will be denied a vaccine because of an inability to pay.

For more information, contact VNA in Routt County at 970-879-1632, in Moffat County at 970-824-8233, or log onto www.nwcovna.info.

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