Maternal & Child Health Program

The Harris County Public Health Maternal & Child Health Program was established to reduce maternal and infant mortality risks and empower expectant mothers and birthing persons to create a foundation for a healthy family by:

  • Home Visiting Support: Trained professionals provide one-on-one assistance in the comfort of your home for up to three years. They offer guidance and support to ensure healthy births and promote positive family growth.
  • Personal and Emotional Support: The program recognizes the importance of emotional well-being during and after pregnancy. We will provide personalized support to help you navigate the challenges of motherhood and promote a healthy bond between you and your child.
  • Resources and Education: The program offers information and assistance in finding prenatal care, postpartum care, and programs to support babies and young children. Resources include linkage to counseling, mental health services, substance use disorder services, job placement support, pregnancy and after pregnancy care services, food assistance, and educational advancement assistance.
  • Access to Services: Families are connected to the ACCESS Harris County program, which provides various services to enhance independence and self-care.

The Maternal & Child Health Program is an affiliate of Healthy Families America, an evidence-based home visiting model that uses tools proven to help cultivate healthy parent-child relationships. Growing Great Kids is the evidence-based curriculum utilized during home visits for parent-child relationship building and early-childhood development.

How Our Program Works

Our program's vision is to provide the following resources:

  • One-on-one home visiting support
  • Parent-child relationship building and family goal setting
  • Prenatal, postpartum, and infant care items

With linkage to:

  • Counseling and mental health services
  • Substance use disorder services
  • Job placement support
  • Prenatal care and well-child care
  • Food and housing assistance
  • Education advancement assistance
  • Doulas and midwifes
  • Alternative birthing centers
  • Legal aid services

For More information Contact us:

Phone: 713-368-MOMS (6667)
Email: [email protected]


State of the Problem

“Among black women, national and state-level studies consistently found higher pregnancy-related mortality risks, even when controlling for factors such as insurance coverage, marital status, and medical conditions. “

(Social Determinants of Pregnancy-Related Mortality and Morbidity in the United States, 2020)

*The chart above lists the mortality rates of children below the age of 18. 

HC Maternal Mortaility Rate

The disproportionate health disparities for black women and babies during childbirth require immediate action at both the state and county levels. In 2021, Harris County Public Health published the Leading Causes of Death report which began the call to action for our Department:

  • Black infants (under 1 year of age) had the highest mortality rate between 2016 to 2020, which was more than double the rate of other racial/ethnic groups.
  • In Harris County from 2016-2020, Precinct 1 (predominately communities of color) had the highest maternal mortality rate at 5.68 deaths per 10,000 live births
  • From 2016-2020, the infant mortality rate in Harris County was 5.82 to 6.32 deaths per 1,000 live births

Local, State and National Maternal Mortality Trends

Below are statistics from other major state and national entities highlighting this issue:

  • Harris County has a child mortality rate of 55.3 per 100,000 as compared with the Texas state rate of 51.3 per 100,000
    (Episcopal Health Foundation, 2021).
  • The national maternal mortality rate was 23.8 per 100,000 births in 2020, an 18% year-over-year increase. But Black women died at a rate of 55.3 per 100,000 births that year, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. (Texas Maternal Morbidity Review)

  • Maternal health outcomes in Texas have national implications. According to a recent report, the severe maternal morbidity rate in Texas in 2015 was 19.7 per 1,000 deliveries 
  • Studies reported increased case fatality, failure-to-rescue (death in the setting of severe morbidity), and preventable maternal deaths among black women, suggesting that management of severe morbidity may play a role in death disparities.

(Social Determinants of Pregnancy-Related Mortality and Morbidity in the United States, 2020)

Hospitalizations Severe Morbidity in Texas-resize558x375

Addressing Maternal Health Inequalities

The Maternal and Child Health Program will address the significant health inequities in maternal and infant health outcomes, especially for Black mothers and infants. In the pilot year, the project team will recruit a cohort of up to 100 participants across Harris County through HCPH clinical sites, WIC and Early Childhood program, and referral partners to help guide African American expectant mothers, postpartum mothers, breastfeeding mothers, and mothers that have delivered a baby within the last year.

Program Outcome

Program Impact

Decrease Maternal Health Disparities
Decreased percentage of clients with preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, low birth weight deliveries and maternal mortality in black populations, increased number of home visiting resources for post-partum care and resource navigation.
Decreased Percentage of Infant Mortality
Increased resources to ensure well-child visits, immunizations, and education on safe sleep practices and infant feeding measures
Improved Access to Care and Resource Navigation
Increased wraparound services, increased screening for Social Determinants of Health (SDOH), and access to services to reduce barriers to health coverage with pathways for alternatives.

Process and Eligibility

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Must be a Harris County Resident
  • Currently pregnant, OR delivered a baby within the last 12 months, OR experiences a pregnancy loss within the last 12 months.

Services are provided at no cost to eligible participants.

Enrollment into the Maternal and Child Health Program is now open. Please email [email protected] or call the Harris County Public Health Maternal and Child Health Hotline at 713-368-MOMS (6667).