Children Health

Patrick-Singleton to help locally expand maternal and child health efforts

The Michigan Health Improvement Alliance, Inc., also known as MiHIA, along with community partners advancing the THRIVE Portfolio of work, have expanded efforts supporting maternal and infant health outcomes in the region.

The organization announced this week that Jameca Patrick-Singleton will be serving as lead of several efforts related to maternal and child health starting Nov. 1, in part replacing Shanna Hensler, initiative leader for MiHIA, who has recently accepted a new role.

Patrick-Singleton will have broad oversight for the THRIVE Portfolio in relation to the Maternal and Child Health and Well-being Initiative, the Region 5 Perinatal Quality Collaborative (PQC), and the Centering Pregnancy initiative.

The Maternal Child Health and Well-Being Initiative brings together a broad set of community organizations in a systems improvement effort focused on improving the outcomes for women and children. The intended result of this initiative is to improve the health, education and life outcomes of mothers and children. An important part of the THRIVE Portfolio, this initiative began earlier this year with ongoing partnership of public health, healthcare systems, school systems, multiple community agencies, the medical school and residencies, as well as community members.

The Region 5 PQC is an effort lead by MiHIA in partnership with Saginaw County Community Mental Health Authority (SCCMHA) and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) to establish goals and strategies based on evidence-based practices to improve mother and infant health in Prosperity Region 5, which is made up of Arenac, Bay, Clare, Isabella, Gladwin, Gratiot, Midland and Saginaw counties.

Centering Pregnancy is a program which addresses the quality, availability, use and effectiveness of the maternal and infant health delivery model, particularly for at-risk populations. To date, the initiative has helped more than 300 women and their families in Saginaw County through the Centering Pregnancy and Centering Parenting programs. The model takes a group approach to prenatal care and ongoing childhood health, with support from Central Michigan University’s College of Medicine and Covenant HealthCare. The program was recently expanded in 2021 to include MidMichigan Medical Center — Mt. Pleasant in Isabella County.

Patrick-Singleton’s prior experience before joining MiHIA includes working with the City of Flint as a recovery officer helping residents in the recovery and rebuilding of the Flint water infrastructure and recovery support services. She has also previously served as the director of coalition building programs with Metro Community Development helping advance community housing programs.

“Our work with maternal and child health has been incredibly impactful thanks to Shanna’s leadership in the first years of the program. Her dedication to this important effort is one of the critical components that has allowed us to dramatically impact maternal and child health outcomes in the region,” stated Mark Kato, interim CEO of MiHIA. “We look forward to building on her legacy as we expand the scope of this initiative to support more mothers and families within the region.”

“It’s been an honor and privilege to get to work on such impactful programs in maternal and child health and alongside many great partners,” said Hensler. “I’m proud of our accomplishments that have supported so many families in getting a foundational start with health and look forward to seeing the impact this program will have for years to come.”

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