Prenatal Care Access Initiative

We created the Prenatal Care Access Initiative in 1989 to increase access to and utilization of prenatal healthcare and to improve childbirth outcomes for low-income women in Northern California.

The initiative recruited obstetricians to establish medical practices in rural California communities, and provided assistance and incentives for pregnant women to make prenatal care visits. From 1989 to 1992, the program awarded 64 grants to 38 organizations in nine counties.

During the three-year funding period, the number of prenatal clinics increased from 43 to 59 (eight were supported by Sierra Health Foundation); nine maternity nurse practitioners were trained through initiative grants; 9,430 women were served and 1,285 babies were born; and 85 percent of PCAI women received adequate prenatal care versus 69 percent nationally.