Hamilton Center, Inc., a founding partner for West Central Indiana Healthy Start (WCIHS), will provide vital behavioral health and referral networks for the new initiative. Healthy Start is a federal initiative representing 100 organizations serving communities with infant mortality rates at least 1.5 times the U.S. national average, and with high rates of other negative maternal and infant outcomes. The WCIHS consortium will receive up to $1 million each year over five years and target Fountain, Parke, and Vigo counties.
“Healthy Start programs provide information, resources, and support to pregnant and parenting women and their families to ensure a healthy pregnancy and to help nurture their newborns,” said HRSA Administrator George Sigounas, MS, Ph.D.
This project will strive to address factors, such as high rates of poverty, limited access to care, and other socioeconomic factors, to ensure women have healthy pregnancies and raise healthy children. The project is funded by a HRSA grant to Union Hospital’s Richard G. Lugar Center for Rural Health.
Hamilton Center will provide crucial behavioral health resources for WCIHS families. In addition to treatment, the organization will be a referral partner through their Healthy Families program. WCIHS and Healthy Families will ensure area families have comprehensive wraparound resources.
“As a community, it is critical that we provide strong and ongoing support to pregnant woman, infants and new families,” said Melvin L. Burks, CEO of Hamilton Center, Inc. A healthy start in life is vital to the physical and emotional health of children as they grow and development into adolescents and adults,” he said.
WCIHS is a consortium facilitated by the Richard G. Lugar Center for Rural Health and composed of Hamilton Center, Family Health and Help Center, St. Vincent South Clinic, Valley Professionals Community Health Center (VPCHC), Union Hospital, Union Medical Group, Chances and Services for Youth (CASY), and Wabash Valley Crisis Pregnancy Center (CPC).
The Hamilton Center, Inc. is a regional behavioral health system in Central and West Central Indiana with corporate offices located in Terre Haute, IN. It provides services and treatment to children, youth and adults, with specialized programs for expectant mothers, infants, and people with drug and alcohol problems. Funding will strengthen the health workforce to provide such services, build a more effective and efficient service-delivery system, and promote and improve health equity across participating organizations.
Learn more about WCIHS at LugarCenter.org/wcihs.