Linden Neighborhood Conversation

Robin Davis
Director of Media Relations

Melanie Crabill
Communications Manager

Media Advisory
News Date: December 02, 2019

CelebrateOne Awarded $4.5 Million Grant to Address Disparities in the Infant Mortality Rate

The Ohio Department of Medicaid (ODM) and the State’s Managed Care Plans (MCPs) announced a $4.5 million grant to a local coalition of 13 partners, led by CelebrateOne. The grant is part of a 2-year commitment from ODM and the State’s MCPs to address the disparity in successful birth outcomes experienced by African American women in Franklin County.

“Addressing the disparity reflected in our local infant mortality rate is a complex issue, and it is critical that we address it,” said Mayor Andrew J. Ginther. “The grant from the Ohio Department of Medicaid and the State’s Managed Care Plans will help us improve care and support for all of our residents, regardless of their race, address or family income.”

Across Franklin County and in CelebrateOne priority neighborhoods, non-Hispanic Black infants are more than twice as likely to die as non-Hispanic White infants. In partnership with hospitals, clinical providers and community-based agencies, funding from ODM and the State’s MCPs will increase the availability of prenatal care and support for women of childbearing age, with an emphasis on African American women.

“Ohio Medicaid covers approximately 52 percent of the births in our state, and our department is deeply committed to investing in local services that will help reduce the infant mortality rate for African American babies in Ohio,” said Maureen Corcoran, state Medicaid Director. “We are holding ourselves, Medicaid’s managed care plan partners, and our new community grantees accountable to make positive changes for Ohio’s babies.” 

Since 2016, ODM and the State’s MCPs have invested over $6.7 million in the community’s efforts to reduce infant mortality. The 2020-2021 grant ensures continued support for programs with a history of success while also directing funds towards new or emerging community-based efforts that target the disparity in birth outcomes.  

“The State’s emphasis on home visiting, CenteringPregnancy prenatal care, community health workers and community-based programs offering wholistic care, like that of Doulas and through programs such as Moms2B, supports the collective work to reduce infant deaths,” added Erika Clark Jones, Executive Director of CelebrateOne. “This funding will help to sustain and deepen our work across Columbus and Franklin County.”

Grant partners include:

Evidence-Based Group Prenatal Care – CenteringPregnancy

Heart of Ohio Family Health Centers - $209,968

Funds will be used to expand group prenatal care to Heart of Ohio’s Capital Park clinic, where 53% of the women served are African American. Additionally, the funds will allow Heart of Ohio to maintain support for community health workers.

PrimaryOne Health - $78,772

The grant will be used to expand CenteringPregnancy programming to PrimaryOne’s Agler Road clinic, which has shown improvements in patient satisfaction with care, prenatal care attendance and decreased preterm birth rates.

Community Health Workers

CelebrateOne - $855,569

Funding will support CelebrateOne’s community health workers, known as the Connector Corps. Corps members connect pregnant and parenting moms to existing clinical care models to help bridge prenatal and post-partum care. In doing so, Connectors uncover barriers to care and problem solve with families to address challenges related to social determinants of health.

Men for the Movement – $78,575

The grant provides support for Men for the Movement’s community health workers. CHWs provide education to residents of the South Side about topics like prenatal care, childbirth, breastfeeding and safe sleep and connects women and families with local health and social service providers.

YMCA of Central Ohio - $242,153

Funding will be used to grow the Y’s team of community health workers, which provide outreach, education and wrap-around services to pregnant women or mothers with an infant under one in the neighborhoods in and around the Y’s network of branches throughout Franklin County.

Community-Based Interventions

Black Lactation Circle - $17,714

Funding will support this community of Black pregnant and nursing mothers, birth workers, and health professionals to empower Black mothers to meet their breastfeeding goals through evidence-based information and in-person interventions.

The Center for Healthy Families - $81,964

This grant will strengthen the Center’s work engaging parenting and pregnant teens in opportunities to acquire self-sufficiency capabilities of health and well-being, positive networks, education and employment through a coordinated network of community-based services.

Moms2B - $702,635

Funding will support evidence-informed programming focused on educating expectant mothers on a range of topics from health during pregnancy to safely spacing the next pregnancy to parenting to safe sleep and infant care. Moms2B employs multidisciplinary team of social workers, nurses, physicians, medical dietitians, patient navigators and community health workers develop positive relationships with the women in group and individual settings.  

Physicians CareConnection - $415,000

Grant funds will be used to support the community’s centralized intake and referral service for pregnant women, StepOne for a Healthy Pregnancy. The goal of this program is to connect pregnant women with prenatal care and resources, with an aim to get a woman her first prenatal visit within her first trimester.

Restoring Our Own Through Transformation - $357,202

Funding will support ROOTT’s community-based Full-Spectrum Perinatal Support (Doula) model, which focuses on training and relative interventions that target the improvement of birthing conditions and outcomes for families disproportionately impacted by maternal and infant mortality and morbidity.

Prenatal and Post-Partum Home Visiting

Columbus Public Health - $707,601

The grant will support the Moms and Babies First program, which employs a care coordination model that empowers communities to eliminate disparities. Through a range of activities such as outreach, community education, informal counseling, social support and advocacy, team members help build individual and community capacity to ensure successful birth outcomes.

Nationwide Children’s Hospital - $561,427

The grant will allow Nationwide Children’s Hospital to expand and strengthen its work under the Nurse Family Partnership model by establishing a majority African American home visiting team.

OhioHealth - $127,713

The grant will allow OhioHealth to expand and adapt its TOPP home visiting program for adults, which has been shown as effective in reducing rapid repeat pregnancy in teens.


About CelebrateOne

In June 2014, the Greater Columbus Infant Mortality Task Force released its final report. In it were eight recommendations to reduce the community’s infant mortality rate by 40 percent and cut the racial health disparity gap in half by 2020. CelebrateOne was created in November 2014 to carry out the Task Force’s recommendations and ensure Franklin County meets its ambitious goal. For more information, visit: