Being pregnant or a new mom can be overwhelming. When your baby is entirely dependent on you, there can be a lot to learn and do. Baby showers have been a long-standing celebration of birth. They’re also a great space for exchanging parenting advice and helping moms transition to their new life and responsibilities. This November, Blue Cross Complete, the Blues’ Medicaid plan, sponsored a Baby Shower & Health Fair for members to support and celebrate new moms and their young children. Hosting sessions on pregnancy care, car seat safety, breastfeeding, childhood vaccination, juvenile diabetes and dental care, this event was a way for new moms to connect with other new parents, learn about child rearing and see the support and resources available through Blue Cross Complete. One new mom, Nakisha Hudgins, attended with her eleven week old daughter Rahma. “I’m so excited Blue Cross offered this as an opportunity. When I got the invitation I was just excited to get out of the house for a baby shower, but when I saw you could call for transportation services, that put the icing on the cake for me,” she explains. Nakisha currently lives in Ypsilanti, and without a reliable car, it would have been tough to make it out to the east side of Detroit with her infant daughter. Blue Cross was able to provide transportation to the event, but this support extends far beyond just one event.
“They take me to my doctor’s appointments, my daughter’s appointments. On Monday, we had them on the same day and they took me straight to her appointment and waited. They always wait for me. I love it!” Nakisha smiles. “I would be so stressed out if I didn’t have this service because I don’t have transportation right now.” At the Blue Cross Complete Baby Shower & Health Fair, Nakisha was happy to see several different presentations and services that will help her keep Rahma happy and healthy. “At the dental services stand, they told me to call to see if I had dental services included and I found out that I do,” Nakisha says. “I found out that the dentist I go to is in-network too, so I was really excited.” Nakisha got to see and talk to the people who work on services she already uses. “I saw the Text for Baby service here. I was excited because I already use this to remind me of all my doctor appointments,” Nakisha says. “They send me tips through text message about feeding my baby, dressing her warm and having someone watch her while I take a break. They also send texts saying I’m doing well as a mother. Mothers need to hear that!” Nakisha was also able to speak with the state’s WIC (Women Infants and Children) program at the event. “They helped me with a breast pump because my daughter can’t latch on properly. I’ve really been struggling with that and they helped me,” she explains. Nakisha says she learned a lot from the presentations, but she also seems happy just to have connected with the people around the room. “Expecting moms and new moms need support,” she explains. “I definitely need support. This is just a great way of Blue Cross showing their care and support for us and the community.” If you’re a Blue Cross Complete member, there are more resources available to support expecting and new parents. The pregnancy program helps parents learn about their new baby and taking care of moms-to-be. You can also talk to a health educator about prenatal programs and resources. Call the outreach team at 1-888-288-1722. They’re available 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Photo Credit: Kristie Stocker