Resources Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the Healthy Start Prenatal Risk Screen?
Florida’s Healthy Start Prenatal Risk Screening Instrument is a simple, brief questionnaire that helps identify factors in a pregnant woman’s life and medical and psychosocial factors that might lead to poor pregnancy outcomes such as low birth weight, premature birth, fetal/infant death, or developmental delays of the child.
Q: What is the Healthy Start Infant Risk Screen?
Florida’s Healthy Start Infant Risk Screening Instrument is a simple, brief questionnaire that helps the birthing facility identify infants who are at increased risk of post-neonatal or infant mortality during the first year of life or at risk for adverse health and developmental outcomes. Infants with a score of 4 or more are approximately 6 times more likely to die within the first year after birth! So, early intervention is key.
Q: What is the purpose of the Healthy Start risk screen?
The purpose of the risk screen is to determine if there is something about your health, current living situation, or daily activities that could cause problems for you or your baby.
Q: Who has to be Screened?
Florida State Statute, 383.14 (FAC 64-C), written in 1991, states that the Healthy Start Infant Risk Screen is offered to parents or guardians of all infants born in Florida before leaving the delivering facility. In other words, it’s the law!
Q: Are services provided confidential?
All services provided by Healthy Start are confidential. They are kept confidential unless you provide consent to share your information with your doctor, midwife, other healthcare provider, other home visiting organization. Healthy Start complies with all local, state, and national laws and regulations including HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).
Q: Do I have to meet income requirements to participate in Healthy Start?
No. Healthy Start is a risk-based program. If you need help, you are eligible for services. We do not require you to provide your salary or income to participate in any part of the programs provided by Healthy Start.
Q: Is Healthy Start affiliated with the Department of Children and Families?
No. While we occasionally collaborate on community projects, your participation in Healthy Start is voluntary. Our goal is to help you help your family. We offer education and support service, and sometimes that education can help improve your case when Child Protective Services is involved. However, all employees are legally bound to report any reasonably suspected child abuse according to state statute.
Q: How do I choose a doctor, nurse, or midwife?
If you have not already chosen your doctor or midwife, your Connect Intake Coordinator will help you find one close to your home. It is important because early prenatal care helps to reduce pregnancy complications. We look forward to helping you have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.
Q: What is CONNECT?
CONNECT helps pregnant women, caregivers, and families with young children by providing a one-stop entry point for needed services, such as education and support in childbirth, newborn care, parenting, child development, food and nutrition, mental health and financial self-sufficiency.
A referring agency needs to submit a Connect referral form and a call to 1-800-895-9506 from self-referring individuals, referring agencies or healthcare providers can connect pregnant women and families to local programs that help ensure a healthy start in life and a hopeful future.
Q: What if I don’t need services? Should I still complete a risk screen?
Even if you don’t need help or want to use Healthy Start services, answering the questions on the screen assists in obtaining the information and funding necessary to improve the health care system for ALL moms and babies in Florida!
Q: What services does Healthy Start provide?
The Florida Healthy Start program provides education, support and proven interventions to expecting and new families who are at-risk of a poor birth outcome or delay in development. The program focuses on common issues or conditions that occur during pregnancy or in infancy.
Q: What is the Healthy Start Program?
Healthy Start is a statewide non-profit program that provides at-risk pregnant women and infants with the resources, support and help they need to have good health outcomes. The program is voluntary and available to all Florida residents free of charge.
Q: How does Healthy Start make a difference?
The goal of Healthy Start is to reduce infant deaths, reduce the number of low birth weight and premature babies and improve health and developmental outcomes. Healthy Start services can help you have a healthy baby!