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  • Patrick Ervin


Updated: Nov 30, 2022

Certified Family Nurse Practitioner Betsy Dawson (left) and South Sunflower Medical Center Director of Nursing Jennifer Layton show off some of the items expectant moms receive when they participate in the Healthy Mom & Baby program with good attendance.

Mothers-to-be in the surrounding area need to know that they have a new resource. A structured program and a partnership between the Indianola Family Medical Group and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Mississippi called Delta Healthy Mom & Baby makes transitioning into parenthood a little bit easier. “Delta Healthy Mom & Baby is a group prenatal program,” said Betsy DAWSON, Certified Nurse Practitioner. “There are ten sessions where women of the same gestational age come together to get information and support.”

The sessions consist of topics such as cooking, prenatal exercise and most recently, safety. “The safety session involved proper installation of the baby’s car seat,” DAWSON explained. “We had the fire chief (Orlando Battle) demonstrate how to properly secure and latch the seat into a vehicle.”

“The moms also take a hospital tour, learn about postpartum issues, and about how to properly feed the baby,” she added.

Healthy Mom & Baby officially started in the month of June. The cohort of moms in this group are due in December and January, respectively.

Attendance is incentivized through provision of some of the much-needed baby items that help alleviate a bit of the financial burden of being a new parent.

“If the moms attend at least 80% of the sessions, they qualify for all types of goodies,” DAWSON explained. “We provide them a basket with diapers, wipes and a laundry hamper, a car seat and stroller.”

DAWSON said that the moms-to-be not only benefit from the knowledge of community experts and health care providers, but they also participate in open discussions during the sessions to support one another. The program’s late founder would be pleased to see how things have progressed.

“Dr. Katie Patterson started this program,” DAWSON said. “She was very passionate about it and was the driving force.”

Any mother-to-be currently a patient at the Indianola Family Medical Group is eligible. DAWSON said that patients should ask their physician for a referral.

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