NC Preconception Health Plan

North Carolina Strategic Preconception Plan

The North Carolina Strategic Plan was developed as part of a statewide collaborative effort among over 80 different leaders and organizations. It took over a year to develop and focuses on two health issues in particular; healthy weight and pregnancy intendedness. Near the bottom of this page you can access the minutes and presentations from the major meetings that resulted in the plan, which was released in November 2008. We welcome your feedback and ideas. If you’d like to talk more about using this plan in your community, please contact Alvina Long Valentin, the state preconception coordinator. She can be reached at 919-707-5708 or at Alvina.Long@dhhs.nc.gov.

Please click here to view the plan.

Vision Statement

This effort seeks to improve the health of women of childbearing age in North Carolina. Through a collaborative focus on women’s wellness, North Carolina will improve the quality of life for women as well as the health of infants.

Guiding Principles

This effort will…

  • Utilize a collaborative planning, implementation and evaluation process that includes a diverse group of partners across the state.
  • Infuse community development and consumer leadership into each step of the plan.
  • Prioritize programs with the potential to address health disparities.
  • Consider women’s health needs and wellness recommendations within the context of her family and community.
  • Focus on the whole woman, not only on her reproductive capacity.
  • Avoid messages that imply that certain women should or should not become mothers.
  • Address the gap between “knowing and doing” by bridging the transition from information to behavior change.

Goals

  1. Develop partnerships and work collaboratively to integrate preconception health into existing programs and services, as well as to collectively design new interventions.
  2. Advocate for change at programmatic and policy levels to create an environment that promotes the health and well-being of women of reproductive age.
  3. Promote and support preconception health related research, surveillance and evaluation to monitor progress and build a strong evidence base for interventions.
  4. Focus resources on partnerships, programs and services that address disparities in women’s health.

Next Steps

To begin work on the plan, four groups were developed. Anyone who is interested in being part of one or more of these groups is welcome to join us. Below is a listing of each group and their contact person. These groups will work on operationalizing the strategic plan. We anticipate that each of these 4 groups will touch base at least every other month, either by conference call or in person meetings. Please get in touch with the contact person if you’d like to learn more.

Group #1 – Increase Consumer and Community Awareness about Preconception Health – Contact: Judy Ruffin at judy.ruffin@dhhs.nc.gov.

Group #2 – Ensure Quality Preconception Care and Practice Among Health Care Providers and Community Health Workers – Contact: Alvina Long Valentin at alvina.long@dhhs.nc.gov.

Group #3 – Expand Access and Affordability of Preconception Care – Contact: Sarah Verbiest at sarahv@med.unc.edu.

Group #4 – Advocate for Environmental and Policy Changes that Support Preconception Health – Contact: Corrine Giannini at corrine.giannini@dhhs.nc.gov.

Want to join us? Need meeting notes? Please contact Alvina Long Valentin for more information.