This notice announces the opportunity to apply for supplemental funding under the Healthy Start Initiative: Eliminating Disparities in Perinatal Health, also known as the Healthy Start (HS) program. The purpose of the HS program is to improve health outcomes before, during, and after pregnancy, and reduce racial/ethnic differences in rates of infant death and adverse perinatal outcomes. The goal of this supplement is to increase the availability of doulas in Healthy Start service areas most affected by infant and maternal mortality in order to reduce such deaths and decrease such racial/ethnic disparities. Doulas will provide services to women during the periods of pregnancy, birth and at least three (3) months post-partum. Award funds will cover the training, certification, and compensation of doulas. Recipients should demonstrate how doulas will provide culturally responsive pregnancy and childbirth education, early linkage to health care and social services, labor coaching, and breastfeeding education and counseling while fostering parental attachment. Recipients should clearly outline methods to provide supportive services before, during and after childbirth, including breastfeeding initiation promotion. Recipients should demonstrate how doula services will meet the needs of their HS communities and priority population in order to improve birth outcomes and reduce racial/ethnic disparities for participants who have the highest need. In order to achieve this purpose, applications should propose activities designed to meet the following program objectives by the dates indicated. Program Objectives: ? By November 2021, each recipient will contract with one or more doula training organizations to provide training for doula candidates. ? By March 2022, each recipient will recruit three or more candidates to become doulas. ? By September 2022, each recipient will facilitate training for each hired doula. ? By March 2023, doulas hired by each recipient will complete all requirements for the Doulas of North America (DONA) birth doula certification. ? By March 2024, each recipient will provide prenatal, birth, and short term postpartum doula support to a minimum of 72 HS participants. For the purposes of retention, the recipient might consider requesting a formal agreement from each doula hired stating their intent to provide doula services to HS clients for a specific period of performance.
Eligible applicants include any current recipient funded under the HRSA-19-049 Healthy Start Initiative: Eliminating Disparities in Perinatal Health (start date of April 1, 2019).
Simone Esho, MPH