The Healthy Start EPIC Framework presents four guiding principles that can help Healthy Start grantees to maximize the effectiveness of their services to reduce infant mortality, improve birth outcomes and eliminate health disparities. Utilizing the EPIC principles enables grantees to strengthen community service systems to best meet participant needs across all phases of the perinatal period. The first principal is…

Evaluate need and impact

Use community, program, and participant-level data to set priorities for service system improvement and to evaluate the impact of program activities.

To apply this principle, HS grantees should sustain or build their capacity to:

  • Conduct community needs and assets assessments using local data
  • Track participant service utilization, health behaviors, satisfaction, and health outcomes
  • Utilize root cause analysis or other methods to identify community and societal factors that impact maternal and infant health
  • Interpret and use program data to improve the quality of services

Healthy Start Resources

Healthy Start Benchmarks – MCHB has developed benchmarks to assist grantees in identifying targets for the project period, in five key areas: Improve Women’s Health, Promote Quality, Strengthen Family Resilience, Achieve Collective Impact, and Increase Accountability. DHSPS, MCHB, HRSA.

Healthy Start Project Checklist – Helps HS Projects to track progress in implementing key elements of Healthy Start. Checklist questions are aligned with the 4 EPIC principles. HS EPIC Center

Healthy Start Discretionary Grant Information System – Includes data on the characteristics of Healthy Start program participants, number receiving risk reduction/prevention services, and major services provided during the reporting year. MCHB, HRSA.

Other Resources

The Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) –  PRAMS collects state-specific, population-based data on maternal attitudes and experiences before, during, and shortly after pregnancy. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

PeriStats – Provides free access to maternal and infant health-related data at the US, state, county, and city level. Data are updated throughout the year, and useful for fact-finding, assessments, grant writing, policy development, and presentations. March of Dimes Perinatal Data Center.

MCH Data Connect – Provides public health professionals, researchers, policy makers, and students with a comprehensive catalog of MCH data sets, interactive tools, and other resources. Harvard School of Public Health.

CDC WONDER (Wide-ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research) – An easy-to-use, menu-driven system that makes a wide array of CDC’s public health information resources available to health professionals and the public. CDC WONDER is valuable in public health research, decision-making, priority setting, program evaluation, and resource allocation. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

State Health Facts – Provides up-to-date, easy-to-use health data for all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the US as a whole, counties, and territories. Includes over 800 health indicators and allows users to map, rank, trend, and download data. Kaiser Family Foundation.

County Health Rankings – These annual rankings measure vital health factors including high school graduation rates, obesity, smoking, unemployment, income, teen birth rates and more, for nearly every county in America, providing a starting point for change in communities. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.

American Community Survey – An ongoing survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau that gives communities the current information they need to plan investments and services. Data from this survey can be found on American FactFinder. U.S. Census Bureau.

Area Health Resources Files – AHRF is a database of county, state and national files that contains information and indicators on health facilities, health care professions, health status, economic activity, health training programs, and socioeconomic and environmental characteristics. HRSA.