The javascript used on this site for creative design effects is not supported by your browser. Please note that this will not affect access to the content on this web site.
H H S Department of Health and Human Services
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Health Resources and Services Administration
Questions?  |  Order Publications
Health Start, Healthy Future

Maternal and Child Health

Keisha was 18, pregnant and the sole caretaker of her two younger siblings. The stress and worry felt like too much for her, and without proper prenatal care, her baby was at risk for preterm birth or a slew of other problems.

Keisha found health care and support at the Central Hillsborough Healthy Start Project. Funded in part by HRSA’s national Healthy Start Block Grant, the project has been providing care for mother’s and babies in the Tampa area for 10 years.

About 60 percent of women who give birth each year in America receive services through programs funded by the HRSA Maternal and Child Health Bureau.

Most MCHB funds are sent to states through formula-based block grants, which totaled $666 million in FY 2008.

These block grants support vital immunizations and newborn screening tests, along with transportation and case management services that help families access care. States also use block grant funds to develop and implement community-based care systems for children with special health needs and their families.

Additionally, HRSA supports nearly 100 Healthy Start sites in 38 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico that provide community-based outreach, case management, depression screening and educational activities for women in areas with high rates of infant mortality and shortages of health care providers.

Did You Know?
  • Nearly 25 percent of the people in the United States are younger than 18.
  • Most (about 84 percent) of pregnant women enter prenatal care during the first three months of pregnancy, helping to ensure their babies are born healthy.
  • Despite high rates of early prenatal care, The United States still has one of the highest rates of infant death in the industrialized world (6.8 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2004).