Health outcomes of incarcerated pregnant women and their infants in a community-based program

J Midwifery Womens Health. 2002 Sep-Oct;47(5):371-9. doi: 10.1016/s1526-9523(02)00279-9.


An experimental, community-based, residential program, focused on health promotion, was established in 1990 for incarcerated pregnant women with short-term sentences and histories of drug abuse in a large, midwestern metropolitan area in the United States. Infants resided with mothers after birth. Prenatal care, delivery, postpartum, and family-planning services were initiated and provided by a nurse-midwifery service. Community-based health care, job training, and drug rehabilitation were provided for women during pregnancy through the fourth postpartum month. Program participants' prenatal, delivery, postpartum, and neonatal health outcomes are presented and compared with those of incarcerated women in the same state prison system who experienced usual correctional facility care and support. Program participants represented a group of obstetrically high-risk women. Health outcomes for both groups of incarcerated women and their infants were similar and more optimal than would have been expected given their preexisting health conditions and risk factors.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Health Promotion / methods*
  • Humans
  • Infant Welfare
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Maternal Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Maternal-Child Health Centers / organization & administration*
  • Midwestern United States
  • Mothers / psychology
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Postnatal Care / methods
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control*
  • Pregnancy Outcome*
  • Prenatal Care / methods
  • Prisoners*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Substance-Related Disorders / rehabilitation
  • Time Factors