Bringing a child into the world can be exciting and frightening at the same time, both physically, and financially. A program at Baptist Health exists to ease the burden, and get mom and baby started off on the right foot.
It's called Heaven's Loft, where nurses provide prenatal education to new or expecting moms who are low income, without insurance, or who are under insured.
"I've been educated since I started coming here about my weight and about what to feed my family. How to cook. What to watch for, like saturated fat, and all that sort of stuff, to stay away from it have a good diet for my kids and me," said Francis Bodden of Benton.
For taking the time to learn, and for making prenatal visits to their doctor, the moms earn points.
"They also get points by coming to our clinic and visiting with our nurses and getting those educational program opportunities here, and the care that our nurses offer. And then the moms are able to utilize those points in our Heaven's Loft store," said Teresa Conner, Baptist Health Community Outreach Manager.
Those points can be redeemed for clothing, lotion, ointment, baby wipes, or in Francis' case, diapers.
"They're very expensive. I've had up to three kids in diapers at one time. So, yeah, they've really helped," she said.
"When you look at infant mortality and we play a role in reducing that number, that makes me feel good, and it makes me feel proud that I work for an organization that allows us to reach out in the community and look at those needs. And be able to help those moms, when sometimes they can't get that help anywhere else," said Bodden.
Heaven's Loft receives about 800 patient visits a year and is funded by Baptist Health and donations.
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