Maternal and Child Home Visiting

Maternal and child home visiting programs focus on improving the well-being of families with young children. These programs send trained nurses, social workers, community health workers, or other professionals to meet with families in their homes at times convenient for the family. Visits are based on the needs of the parent and child and are different for every family. Home visitors can answer all types of questions, including questions on:

  • Prenatal care
  • Caring for a new baby
  • Breastfeeding
  • Sleeping
  • Child development
  • Health and nutrition
  • Family supports

Home visitors can also link families to community-based resources such as the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Program, Early Intervention, family support services, and more.

What You Should Do

What We Do

Engage families who may benefit from home visits

In Rhode Island, we invite pregnant women and families with young children to participate in home visiting programs through universal screening and community referrals. Families may also directly request home visits.

Fund home visiting programs

In 2010, Rhode Island received new federal funding through the Affordable Care Act's Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program to support evidence-based home visiting in Central Falls, Newport, Pawtucket, Providence, West Warwick, and Woonsocket. We now provide funding to four voluntary, free home visiting programs, some of which serve families statewide. Each home visiting program is different.

First Connections: This program serves families statewide. It is a short-term program that addresses families' needs and links them with resources in their community. Pregnant women and families with young children, birth to age three may receive visits. (more)

Healthy Families America: This long-term, evidence-based program provides services in Central Falls, Newport, Pawtucket, Providence, West Warwick, and Woonsocket. Pregnant women and families with young children, birth through three months of age may enroll. Home visitors continue to work with a family until the child is three years old. (more)

Nurse-Family Partnership: This long-term, evidence-based program serves families in Central Falls, Newport, Pawtucket, Providence, West Warwick, and Woonsocket. All home visitors are nurses. First-time mothers may enroll before their 28th week of pregnancy. Home visitors continue to work with a family until the child is two years old. (more)

Parents as Teachers: This long-term, evidence-based program serves pregnant women and families with young children across the state. The Department funds some sites in Central Falls, Pawtucket, Providence, and Woonsocket. (more)