Oak Park, IL - PCC Community Wellness Center (PCC) is pleased to announce a grant award from the March of Dimes, Illinois Chapter, to support an innovative program aimed to support overweight or obese pregnant women during and after pregnancy. PCC believes that integrated healthcare should extend outside the exam room in order to be most effective. The New Mom’s Wellness Support program will complement the care provided to new moms from providers at the PCC Austin Family Health Center.
A Health Support Specialist at PCC will collaborate with staff from the Community and Economic Development Association of Cook County, Women, Infants, and Children Program (CEDA WIC) to deliver weight management and healthy lifestyle programming to new moms. For mothers in the Austin neighborhood of Chicago, childbirth can bring heightened risk of complications such as low birth weight and premature birth. Women who are overweight are at greater risk for preterm birth and other pregnancy complications and their babies are at greater risk for obesity during childhood. This unique support group will specifically aim to prevent postpartum weight gain and to promote weight loss in order to improve women's health and decrease risk of adverse outcomes for future pregnancies. At PCC 68% of women entering prenatal care are overweight or obese.
The New Mom’s Wellness Support Program is based on the concept of self-management as the foundation of health behavior change. This program includes self-management goal setting for the general population and support groups for those with highest need and motivation to reduce obesity during the interconception period. The program will broadly promote self-management and support new mothers in holistic self-care with a focus on healthy eating and exercise, also including parent support, stress management and mental health. PCC’s Health Support Specialist will share community resources and relevant food preparation ideas, introduce new recipes, and provide incentives and resources that motivate and overcome barriers.
PCC Community Wellness Center is a Federally Qualified Community Health Center with the mission of improving health outcomes for the medically underserved community through the provision of quality, affordable, and accessible primary health care and support services. Anchored with family medicine, PCC is committed to serving the needs of all people in all stages of life, while continuing to specialize in the delivery of comprehensive maternal and child health services to address this unmet need in the community. The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide, the March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. For the latest resources and information, visit marchofdimes.com or nacersano.org.