Health care professionals holding digital tablets. These tablets will help virtually connect mothers who have babies in the NICU.

SAN ANTONIO, TX. – February 11, 2021 – Community First Health Plans donated five tablets to University Health designed to help mothers virtually connect with babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) during their hospital stay. This donation was made in support of the March of Dimes Caring Connections Initiative.

Caring Connections partners with local hospitals to implement services designed to make the experience better for moms during their maternity or antepartum stay or families with babies in the NICU. One in every 10 babies born in the U.S. is admitted to the NICU because of premature birth or another medical condition. Having a baby hospitalized in a NICU – in addition to the restrictive hospital visitation policies due to COVID-19 – can be frightening, confusing, and overwhelming for parents.

The donated tablets will allow parents to virtually connect with their baby during their NICU stay if they’re not able to visit in-person. The tablets will also help mothers keep in contact with their families who are unable to visit during their maternity or antepartum stay. In addition, the tablets provide families access to the  March of Dimes My NICU Baby® App which provides answers, tools, and support, so parents can focus on their baby during what is often a difficult time.

Many families don’t have the resources to connect virtually with their loved ones or access the information or support that they need when facing hospitalization. As a Caring Connections sponsor, Community First is dedicated to finding the best ways to support babies, families, and our entire community, both in and outside health care settings.

We’re proud to partner with local organizations to help support mothers in the community and their families during the ongoing public health pandemic.

In line with this mission, Community First is currently accepting applications for Empowering Pathways: Maternity Scholarship Program, a new scholarship opportunity for expecting Community First Members. Empowering Pathways will provide moms-to-be with career training and job opportunities in addition to other resources including childcare and transportation on a needed basis. Learn more about Empowering Pathways and select the application form to apply. The application deadline is February 19, 2021.