HealthNet’s Better Indy Babies (BIBs) began in 1989 to battle the infant mortality rate in Indianapolis which was one of the worst in the country. Better Indy Babies is a prenatal care coordination program providing services in areas surrounding our primary health care centers. The purpose of the program is to improve the health status of women participating in HealthNet’s OB program in order to reduce infant mortality rates and the incidence of low birth weight infants.

The BIBs program performance data documents a 30% reduction in infant mortality rates, a 20% reduction in preterm deliveries, decreased neonatal intensive care use, and increased self-esteem and parenting skills. Satisfaction surveys also verify that program participants feel positive about their prenatal experience and that barriers were reduced as a result of their participation in the program.

The Better Indy Babies program serves women in neighborhoods with high teen pregnancy rates and high crime rates. Other contributing factors include: increased alcohol and drug use, limited prenatal education, high rates of unwanted or unintended pregnancies, and levels of low income resulting in minimal resources for basic needs such as food and proper housing. The majority of families served live at or near 100% of the federal poverty level.