New OB Navigator Program

Posted on November 19, 2019

by Kristi Chadderdon

The OB Navigator program is a collaboration between the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH), the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA) and the Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS). This initiative will build a network of services and support to wrap our arms around moms and babies to create healthier outcomes for both. It was established by House Enrolled Act 1007, which was signed into law by Gov. Eric Holcomb in 2019.

The goal of this program is to identify women early in their pregnancies and connect them with an OB navigator – a home visitor who provides personalized guidance and support to a woman during her pregnancy through at least the first six to 12 months of her baby’s life. To begin that effort, the program will work to connect pregnant women who are covered by Medicaid in our highest-risk areas to services in their communities.

Karen McKeown – OB Navigator Project Manager
Kris Box – Indiana State Health Commissioner


  • Indiana is the 7th highest ranked for infant mortality.
  • Indiana is considered the worst in the Midwest.
  • Infant mortality is the death of a baby before the first birthday.
  • In 2017, there were 602 infant deaths.
  • 1 death per 1,000 live births:
    • White rate- 5.9%
    • Hispanic rate- 7.6%
    • Black rate – 15.3%
  • Risk Factors for infant mortality:
    • Smoking – 6.9% (US) 13.5% (IN) 21.6% (La Porte)
    • No Prenatal Care 1st Trimester 22.7% (US) 31.4% (IN) 41.1% (La Porte)
    • Not Breastfeeding 16.6% (US) 18.1% (IN) 22.3% (La Porte)
  • The Challenge: To be the best in the Midwest by 2024
  • To save 200 babies a year by 2024
  • New legislation – establish a perinatal navigator program
  • OB Navigator is a home visitor who provides personalized guidance and support to a woman during her pregnancy and 6-12 months after
  • Vision – every pregnant woman in Indiana to be supported by a navigator
  • Moms Helpline – a contact center that connects pregnant women throughout Indiana to available resources; a network of prenatal and child healthcare services within the local community
  • How to help:
    • Talk about OB Navigator in your community.
    • Tell pregnant women about MOMS Helpline 1-844-624-6667.
    • Help us to keep improving the program.
  • Search “Live pregnancy app” on iTunes or Google Play to find one of the premiere apps in Indiana to manage your pregnancy. Download the app for free and receive assistance in locating medical services near you, finding informational articles, keeping a journal, receiving alerts, maintaining a calendar, and much, much more!
  • To access the resources you need for the healthiest start for both mom and baby, text the MCH MOMS HELPLINE: 1-844-MCH-MOMS (844-624-6667).
  • The MCH MOMS Helpline is MORE than an Information referral service: Our Call Specialists also offer:
  • Navigation and enrollment in Health Insurance
  • English and Spanish speaking specialist on staff, with access to a Language line to assist callers of all backgrounds
  • Follow up on all referrals to assist families in accessing needed services and identifying any barriers the family may experience in getting their needs met
  • The MOMS Helpling assists with connecting to resources within your local community, such as:
    • Home Visiting
    • Health Care Providers
    • Transportation Assistance
    • Nutrition Assistance Programs
    • Low to no cost household and baby items
Kristi Chadderdon

Kristi Chadderdon

Kristi wants to live in a world filled with sea glass-covered beaches and Great Danes. As a professional with more than 6 years of marketing experience at the library, she’s been put to the test on a regular basis to create innovative and thoughtful marketing materials and campaigns. She is a big proponent for “Bring Your Dog To Work Day”, however, the administration doesn’t seem to be as enthusiastic.
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