Aiming to reach all families with a newborn, Family Connects creates system change at the population level recognizing that the wellbeing of the parents plays a critical role in laying a positive foundation for their child’s development. Through a partnership with Family Connects International, MHMR joins efforts with local hospitals and the community in offering this voluntary, evidence-based, short-term nurse home visiting program aimed at providing physical and mental health screening of both parent and newborn while also ensuring their connection to a medical home and other needed community resources.
In addition to increased child and family well-being outcomes, the ongoing randomized control trials have shown that infants had 50% fewer emergency room visits and overnight stays during their first year of life resulting in a savings of $3.02 for every $1 in program cost. The researchers have estimated that cities similar in size to Durham, averaging about 3,187 births a year, should expect to see $7 million in community health care cost savings in the first two years of a child’s life with a $2.2 million annual investment in Family Connects.