By Natasha Robinson, MPCA Communications Specialist
Text4baby launched its 2013 State Enrollment Contest this week to help connect expectant mothers and those with infants up to age 1 to critical health and safety information through text messaging. Michigan won last year’s contest in the “Large State” category, enrolling nearly 5,000 new moms into the text4baby service during the 5-month long contest. Michigan Primary Care Association (MPCA) has been a text4baby partner, distributing materials and engaging families through its outreach and enrollment efforts. Along with its member Health Centers across the state, MPCA continues to inform new mothers of the opportunity to receive these helpful text messages.
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, throughout pregnancy and up until the baby’s first birthday. With the infant mortality rate in Michigan at 7.1 deaths per 1,000 infants under age 1, and not enough moms receiving proper care, too many babies are dying or are not given a healthy start. Through the text4baby service, MPCA is helping to address this issue in partnership with Michigan Health Centers which provide prenatal and pediatric care. 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 themselves and their babies.
The top states that enroll the highest percentage of pregnant women and mothers in text4baby between May 12 and October 21, 2013, will be announced and recognized during the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts, in November.
“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 Michigan Primary Care Association’s help, more moms can get signed up to receive these valuable messages.”