NICHQ Collaboration featured in White House Efforts to Improve Substance Use Disorder in Pregnancy
Opioid exposure is associated with adverse maternal and neonatal outcomes, including preterm labor, stillbirth, neonatal abstinence syndrome, and maternal mortality. The number of pregnant women with opioid use disorder at labor and delivery more than quadrupled from 1999 to 2014, according to the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention analysis.
The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) announced the release of Substance Use Disorder in Pregnancy: Improving Outcomes for Families, outlining how overdose-related deaths in pregnant and postpartum women and birthing people can be prevented with evidence-based treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD). The report describes systemic and cultural barriers that make accessing care challenging and outlines key actions the Biden-Harris Administration will take to connect pregnant women and birthing people with substance use disorder to care.
“As a physician, I have seen firsthand how treatment for people with substance use disorder, including pregnant women, can improve health outcomes and save lives. But today, access to care remains inconsistent across the country. This report lays out what we must do to ensure people who need help can get it, including pregnant women,” said ONDCP Director Dr. Rahul Gupta in a recent news release.
With an emphasis on the need for collaborative efforts among hospitals, outpatient clinics, and local communities, the report details the ways in which state perinatal collaboratives have been exceptionally effective in improving outcomes for pregnant women and infants such as by reducing risk of bloodstream infections and early term deliveries. From 2017-2022, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Reproductive Health funded 13 state perinatal quality collaboratives (PQCs) and the National Institute for Children’s Health Quality (NICHQ) as the coordinating center for PQCs.
Expanding on the last five years, NICHQ will continue supporting state teams in their efforts to reduce maternal and infant morbidity and mortality, improve perinatal health outcomes, and reduce disparities using quality improvement (QI) methods integrated with a health equity approach. During the newest funding cycle, the number of CDC-funded perinatal quality collaboratives will expand to an anticipated 27 states. These perinatal collaboratives frequently include state leaders and maternal and infant health providers.
The Administration for Children and Families and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration co-fund the National Center on Substance Abuse and Child Welfare (NCSACW). The NCSACW’s charge is to develop knowledge and provide training and technical assistance for states, tribes, and communities to improve outcomes for children and families affected by substance use and mental disorders.
In partnership with the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, NCSACW will continue to work with NICHQ to disseminate resources and conduct joint webinars for members focused on empowering hospitals to create Family Care Plans/ Plans of Safe Care. This effort began in September 2022 with the webinar: “Harnessing the Power of Collaboration to Improve Outcomes for Families Affected by Substance Use Disorders in Pregnancy.”
Look for NICHQ at 2022 American Public Health Association Annual Meeting
Join the National Institute for Children's Health Quality (NICHQ) on Nov. 6 at 2 p.m. for The Ever-Evolving Path to Equity in Children’s Health, a panel highlighting the evolution of NICHQ's equity work at the 2022 American Public Health Association Annual Meeting.
NAPPSS-IIN Hosting Community of Practice Meetings to address policies and Share Experiences about Safe Sleep and Breastfeeding
The NICHQ National Action Partnership to Promote Safe Sleep Improvement and Innovation Network (NAPPSS-IIN) project will continue to convene six Community of Practice (CoP) groups from September 2022 – March 2023. CoPs include Birthing Professionals, Community Advocacy Organizations, Community-Based Home Visitors, Early Childcare Providers, First Responders, and Researchers. Each group will convene twice to continue to address policies, improve skills, and learn from each other’s experiences in the areas of safe sleep and breastfeeding.
NICHQ Employee Spotlight: Kelly Edwards, MPH, Senior Project Manager
Kelly Edwards discusses her journey from NICHQ intern to Senior Project Manager, and shares highlights and key takeaways from the six NICHQ projects she's supported.
Children and Their Families Have a Right to Gender-Affirming Healthcare
As physicians, public health professionals, and care providers, we have an obligation to support youth with unique healthcare needs who are at higher risk for negative health outcomes from discrimination, including bullying, physical assault, and suicide. Join us by engaging in meaningful dialogue about best practices for gender diverse kids to improve quality of life, reduce mental health disparities, and most importantly, help the most historically marginalized kids achieve their optimal health.
3 Ways to Close Gaps in Sickle Cell Disease Care: Recommendations from NICHQ Projects
In the past several decades, clinicians, public health professionals, and those with lived experience have seen advancements in Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) treatments and research that have significantly improved outcomes and increased life expectancies for people living with SCD. For example, the FDA-approved medication hydroxyurea (HU) has been recommended as a SCD standard of care due to its ability to help people with SCD mitigate pain and the need for blood transfusions. Preventative measures, such as screening children and adolescents for risk of stroke and ensuring that all people who have SCD receive recommended vaccinations, have also been instrumental in reducing complications associated with SCD. And recently, development of gene therapies has presented possibilities of a new cure. Conversations on how to improve access to care should continue, and these three recommendations begin with some of the most pressing needs.
3 Lessons from Centering Community Voices: Safe Sleep and Breastfeeding Using a Quality Improvement Framework
Quality improvement (QI) work is driven by an interest in implementing changes that lead to improvements. In breastfeeding and safe sleep work, this can be challenging. It can be difficult to fully and accurately understand the source of maternal and child health inequities. Learn how National Action Partnership to Promote Safe Sleep Improvement in Innovation Network (NAPPSS-IIN) project confronted these challenges and found that community-based participatory quality improvement might hold the answer. As NAPPSS-IIN concludes its fifth year of breastfeeding and safe sleep work, three key lessons have emerged about the value of community voice in breastfeeding and safe sleep quality improvement.