When low-income women become parents for the first time, they often need support, education and encouragement to be the best parent they can be. They truly want to succeed. Desire, unfortunately, is not enough. These women are usually most open to health care assistance, parenting tools, and a therapeutic relationship with a community health worker who provides in-home services. The best partnership for a therapeutic relationship is between a new mother and a nurse. Efficient home visitation programs can save lives and taxpayer dollars. Nurse-Family Partnership pairs an experienced BSN RN with a first-time low-income mother from pregnancy until her baby turns two years old. Without quality support the lives of our most vulnerable citizens can be in jeopardy.

Key Take Away Points

  • It is critical for first time, low-income mothers and their children to have quality access to a safe environment, good health practices, community support, and resources to help them attain their educational, economic, and personal goals.
  • Fragile families often need help to learn how to build healthy relationships.
  • The cycle of child abuse and neglect can be broken.
  • Pairing en experienced, highly trained BSN prepared RN with a first time mother early in pregnancy until her baby turns two can change the trajectory of a child's life for the better.
  • Nurse-Family Partnership has proven outcomes that save lives and taxpayer dollars
  • Efficient home visitation programs that work with parents to become better caregivers can prevent child abuse, neglect and lessen the impact of trauma on a young brain.
  • Children learn to love by trusting.
  • Emotional safety is an important part of a child's mental health.

Author Biography

Cheryl Weise, R.N., B.S.N., is currently the Nurse Supervisor for the Nurse-Family Partnership program. The implementing agency for this Nurse-Family Partnership program is The Children's Shelter in San Antonio, Texas. Ms. Weise has worked in Maternal Child Health in the San Antonio area for 35 years. She worked as a Nurse Home Visitor for NFP in the field for 4 years before becoming the supervisor.