Text4baby Contest to Help Pregnant Women and New Mothers
Memorial aims to reach thousands of moms throughout the state with free health SMS service
South Bend, Ind. -- In honor of National Women's Health Week, Memorial Hospital of South Bend announced its participation in the 2013 Text4baby State Enrollment Contest, a national competition to provide pregnant and new moms with important information they need for their health and that of their babies. U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius launched the contest by recognizing moms in a special Mother’s Day blog.
With the infant mortality rate in Indiana at 7.62 and not enough moms receiving proper care, too many babies are dying or are not given a healthy start. Through the text4baby service, Memorial seeks to address this issue in partnership with the St. Joseph County Health Department and Memorial’s Community Health Enhancement programming. Women who text "BABY"(or "BEBE" for Spanish) to 511411 receive three free text messages a week, timed to their due date or their baby's birth date, through pregnancy and up until the baby’s first birthday. Research shows that women who use text4baby feel more prepared for motherhood because they are armed with the knowledge that leads to better health for them and their babies.
Secretary Sebelius launched the State Enrollment Contest on Mother’s Day on the Saving Mothers, Giving Life website. "In an effort to reach more women with important information related to the Health Insurance Marketplace, we are collaborating with text4baby, the nation’s largest and only free mobile information service designed to promote maternal and child health through text messaging," said Secretary Sebelius. "Today, on Mother’s Day, text4baby is launching the 2013 State Enrollment Contest – a friendly competition among states – to connect even more women to critical health and safety information." Secretary Sebelius also sent a text message to text4baby moms wishing them a happy Mother’s Day and honoring moms around the world.
The top states that enroll the highest percentage of pregnant women and mothers in text4baby between May 12 and Oct. 21, 2013 will be announced and recognized during the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting in Boston, Mass. in early November. States across the country are kicking off their contest activities with events featuring public officials, healthcare workers and families who have benefited from text4baby. Since launch in 2010, text4baby in Indiana has reached more than 16,000 participants with the support of over 950 federal, state, local, and corporate partners who extend the text4baby message through their own outreach programs nationwide.
"Memorial Hospital is excited about participating in the 2013 Text4baby State Enrollment Contest and is pleased to partner with text4baby to provide critical free health and safety information to women who need it the most," said Amy Murray, Manager of the Memorial Childbirth Center.
"TheText4baby State Enrollment Contest is a great way for states to actively participate in making sure pregnant women and new moms across the country get the information they need on immunizations, appointments, resources, and other health and safety information that leads to better health for them and their babies," said Sarah Ingersoll, text4baby director, National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition. "Text4baby is proven effective and with Memorial’s help, more moms can get signed up to receive these valuable messages."
National organizations that are supporting the 2013 State Enrollment Contest include:
- American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG)
- American Public Health Association (APHA)
- Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs (AMCHP)
- Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO)
- March of Dimes
- National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO)
- National Head Start Association (NHSA)
- National Healthy Start Association
- National WIC Association
- Southern Governors’ Association (SGA)
- The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy
These organizations will be promoting the contest to their extensive memberships. For more information visit www.text4baby.org.
Text4baby is the nation’s only free mobile information service designed to promote maternal and child health through text messaging. A free service of the nonprofit National Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition (HMHB), the Founding Sponsor is Johnson & Johnson. Founding partners include Voxiva, CTIA - The Wireless Foundation, and Grey Healthcare Group (a WPP company).Text4baby’s public-private partnership also includes over 900 national, state and local organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Women who text "BABY" (or "BEBE" for Spanish) to 511411 receive three free text messages a week, timed to their due date or their baby's birth date, through pregnancy and up until the baby’s first birthday. The messages address topics such as immunization, nutrition, birth defect prevention, safe sleep, and developmental milestones. To learn more, please visit text4baby.org.
About Memorial Hospital
For more than a century, Memorial Hospital of South Bend has been a leader in providing the latest medical services to meet the needs of a thriving community. Our care has since extended into both northern Indiana and southern Michigan to offer high quality services through our regional centers for cancer, cardiac care, childbirth, emergency care and rehabilitation - to name only a few - all provided by highly skilled physicians and an expert, caring staff.