The Kaiser Permanente Northern CA Early Start’s mission is to provide women with access to services and support to have an alcohol, tobacco and drug free pregnancy, allowing the delivery of a healthy baby.
The success of Early Start rests on four interventions:
- Universal screening of all pregnant women
- Co-location of a licensed mental health professional in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
- Linking Early Start appointments with routine prenatal care appointments
- Educating all women and clinicians
Dr. Goler described the barriers to implementing a program such as Early Start, including the challenge for hospitals to redeploy current inpatient resources to outpatient services in order to generate savings in neonatal units, and the denial and skepticism among all levels of health care providers that substance abuse and dependency is a disease that can be treated effectively. The success of Early Start highlights the impact that multi-disciplinary care teams can have on patient outcomes and professional satisfaction, and the importance of full inclusion of behavioral health treatment in prenatal care.
Dr. Goler has asked us not to distribute her slide presentation. Because we experienced minor visual technical difficulties at the very end of the webinar, the final slide does not appear in the recording.
Here is the contact information from the last slide:
NANCY GOLER, MD, Regional Medical Director Early Start: Nancy.Goler@kp.org
MONICA HAIMOWITZ, Regional Director Early Start: Monica.Haimowitz@kp.org
Nancy Goler, MD is the Regional Medical Director of the Early Start Program for Northern California. In addition, she is the Clinical Director for the Vallejo Call Center, one of the advice and appointment centers for all Kaiser Permanente primary care patients in Northern California.