Nationally Recognized Home Visitation Program Launches to Serve Low-Income, First-Time Mothers


Community and health leaders announced today that Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP), a nationally recognized, evidence-based home visitation program for low-income, first-time mothers, will expand to serve mothers in Florence, Marlboro, Dillon and Darlington counties. NFP has three primary goals: to improve pregnancy outcomes, improve child health and development and strengthen the economic self-sufficiency of the families it serves. The program will be implemented in this area by McLeod Health.

On Wednesday, November 12, program and community leaders gathered at McLeod to celebrate the launch of the new NFP site. Once fully staffed, the program will have the capacity to serve 150 families.

Octavia Williams-Blake, Associate Vice President, Employee & Occupational Health, McLeod Health, gave the keynote address at today’s event.

“Children are the future of our community, and we must ensure that they are poised for success from day one,” said Williams-Blake. “I’m excited to have NFP in our community to help build a strong foundation for our young children.”

NFP is one of the oldest and most thoroughly evaluated nurse home visitation programs in the nation. Through regular in-home visits, nurses work with enrolled mothers to improve maternal health, promote healthy child development and support mothers with issues such as continuing school, finding work or establishing adequate housing. Home visits start early in pregnancy and continue until the child’s second birthday. The program also encourages participation from the father and other members of the family.

Lindsay Leonard, Senior Director of State, Local and Global Corporate Citizenship at Boeing South Carolina, also provided remarks.

“NFP is an evidence-based community health program that helps transform the lives of vulnerable mothers and helps build capacities of children at an early age,” said Leonard. “Boeing invests in programs like NFP because they promote early childhood education that engage children in lifelong learning and put them on the path to succeed in school and in life.”

In South Carolina, initial results from NFP have shown that:

  • 90 percent of babies were born full term and 89 percent were born at a healthy weight (at or above 2,500 grams/5.5 pounds).
  • 73 percent of NFP mothers had no subsequent pregnancies at program completion (2.5 years). Comparatively, in a national study of low-income mothers, 39 percent of pregnancies occurred within 18 months of a previous birth.
  • 48 percent of mothers who entered the program without a high school diploma or GED are working to obtain one.

The expansion of NFP to Florence, Marlboro, Dillon and Darlington counties is supported by a public-private partnership that includes the Children’s Trust of South Carolina, the McLeod Health Foundation, Boeing and the Marlboro County General Hospital, a private foundation.

NFP serves families in 26 South Carolina counties: Abbeville, Barnwell, Edgefield, Greenwood, Saluda, McCormick, Anderson, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Williamsburg, Greenville, Pickens, Oconee, Orangeburg, Lexington, Richland, Marlboro, Darlington, Florence, Dillon, Spartanburg and Union.

The program is supported statewide by a public-private partnership that includes The Duke Endowment, South Carolina DHEC, the BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina Foundation, South Carolina First Steps to School Readiness, the Children’s Trust of South Carolina and the NFP National Service Office.