Press Releases

Section: News

VPH Awarded First 5 LA Grant

Posted on 12/2/2013

VAN NUYS, Calif. — Valley Presbyterian Hospital was awarded a $772,643 grant from First 5 LA to implement the 'Welcome Baby' prenatal and infant care program.The grant period is from December 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014 and is expected to be extended for an additional year, through June 30, 2015.

The Welcome Baby program is a First 5 LA initiative designed to strengthen families by improving the physical and emotional health, and safety of children throughout Los Angeles County. The program offers free hospital and home-based services to pregnant women and mothers who give birth at participating hospitals.

"Valley Presbyterian Hospital is honored to be selected as a hospital partner in the First 5 LA Welcome Baby program," said Jeannine Acantilado Wolinsky, Interim Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer."As a nonprofit, community hospital, our goal is to support new mothers through the journey of pregnancy, birth and early parenthood."

With more than 3,500 babies born each year, Valley Presbyterian Hospital's Little Treasures Maternity Services Labor & Delivery unit is one of the busiest in the region, and provides around-the-clock obstetric care to parents and newborns. Little Treasures also encompasses a newly renovated Perinatal Center that combines perinatology, high-risk infant follow-up and non-stress test services under one roof. Additionally, the hospital offers women and families a wide variety of free health education classes to help mothers prepare for childbirth, breastfeeding and infant care.

"Through the Welcome Baby grant program, we will expand our Little Treasures Maternity Services to meet the growing needs of mothers, children and families in our community," said Acantilado Wolinsky.

Valley Presbyterian Hospitalhas partnered with El Nido Family Centers to provide hospital and home-based services to participating Welcome Baby patients. El Nido is a nonprofit organization that provides youth counseling, parent education, child abuse and teen pregnancy prevention services in Los Angeles County.

"We are honored to partner with Valley Presbyterian Hospital to implement the Welcome Baby program in our community," said Liz Herrera, Executive Director of El Nido Family Centers. "The program provides critically needed resources to mothers and families and supports our ongoing mission to build communities where children grow up healthy, safe and happy."

All families delivering at Valley Presbyterian Hospital — regardless of where they live — will receive a Welcome Baby hospital visit at the time of their child's birth. Families also may be eligible for up to nine Welcome Baby engagement points: three times prenatally, once at the hospital, and up to five times after the baby's birth.

Welcome Baby services aim to address a wide spectrum of maternity concerns, such as breastfeeding, prenatal health testing, active labor signs, postpartum depression, infant nutrition, infant jaundice, and growth stages.

During Welcome Baby visits, a member of the program staff will provide services such as:

  • Observing and evaluating infant feeding and providing breastfeeding advice
  • Observing parent-infant attachment and infant behavior
  • Assisting families in establishing a medical home, following up on well-child visits and identifying health insurance coverage, if necessary
  • Educating parents about the parent-child bond and how it can build confidence and success
  • Screening mothers for postpartum depression and, if needed, referring them to services
  • In partnership with parents, performing a reputable screening to assess child development milestones
  • Referring families to their local Best Start community activities

"First 5 LA is pleased to work with Valley Presbyterian Hospital on the Welcome Baby program," said Kim Belshé, executive director of First 5 LA. "Since 1958, Valley Presbyterian Hospital has been taking excellent care of mothers and families in the San Fernando Valley. Through the Welcome Baby program at Valley Presbyterian Hospital, mothers and families in the Van Nuys and surrounding community now will have access to additional support resources as they build their future."

About Valley Presbyterian Hospital

Valley Presbyterian Hospital is a 350-bed facility that ranks among the largest acute care hospitals in the San Fernando Valley. Founded in 1958, the nonprofit, non-sectarian, independent, community hospital provides high quality, patient-centered care through leading-edge technology and a full range of medical services.