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Impact of a Mobile Van on Prenatal Care Utilization and Birth Outcomes in Miami-Dade County

Abstract

The study aimed to determine if there was a difference in prenatal care utilization and birth outcomes among demographically similar women who used or did not use a mobile van for prenatal care. Mothers who utilized the mobile van at least one time for their prenatal care and delivered between August 2007 through September 2008 were considered the Mobile group (n = 182) and a Comparison group of the same size who delivered within the same time period was randomly matched by sociodemographic characteristics. Birth data was obtained from Florida Department of Health Office of Vital Statistics and from the mobile clinic’s Health Management System (HMS) database. Nearly 95% of mothers in both groups were foreign born, with the majority from Mexico. The evaluation of prenatal care showed that there was a significant difference (P = 0.0006) in the trimester in which mothers began care. Both the Kessner (P = 0.0003) and Kotelchuck (<0.0001) Indices demonstrated a statistically significant difference in that more mothers in the Mobile group had adequate care. Birth weight distribution did not reveal a statistically significant difference (P = 0.0911) however the Mobile group did have a lower percentage of low birth weight infants (4.4% vs. 8.8%). There was a statistically significant difference in the amount of pre-term births (P = 0.0492) between the groups. The results suggest that a mobile van can be used to improve both early access to adequate prenatal care as well as birth outcomes such as prematurity.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank staff of the March of Dimes South Florida Chapter, the Children’s Trust, the Healthy Start Coalition of Miami‐Dade, the Blue Foundation and the Miami-Dade County Health Department Office of Women’s Health and Preventive Services for their dedication to the MOMmobile project.

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Correspondence to Erin O’Connell.

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O’Connell, E., Zhang, G., Leguen, F. et al. Impact of a Mobile Van on Prenatal Care Utilization and Birth Outcomes in Miami-Dade County. Matern Child Health J 14, 528–534 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10995-009-0496-8

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Keywords

  • Mobile van
  • Birth outcome
  • Prenatal care
  • Foreign born