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Research-based CenteringPregnancy® program launched by UTHealth

Group model supports women in high-risk pregnancies at LBJ Hospital

HOUSTON  (March 19, 2012) – CenteringPregnancy®, a national model of group care for underserved pregnant women, is part of a new study by researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). The program has been launched at the Harris County Hospital District’s Lyndon B. Johnson General Hospital.

 “Studies have shown that there are fewer preterm births and greater patient satisfaction for patients delivering at a hospital with this program,” said Silvia Linares, M.D., assistant professor at the UTHealth Medical School and lead investigator of the study, which will focus on high-risk pregnancies.

Part of the non-profit Centering Healthcare Institute, CenteringPregnancy® has three central components: healthcare assessment, education and support. Other institutions using the program include Vanderbilt, Yale and Harvard.

The program will begin with two groups of 15 women each who are matched for gestational age. At their two-hour group appointment, each woman will be seen separately by her physician, as well as take part in group educational and skill sessions, such as learning how to take their blood pressure. As patients build relationships with each other, they establish a peer support group, Linares said.

Amerigroup, which was founded in 1994 to meet the needs of families enrolled in publicly funded health care programs, is funding the $35,000 study.

Deborah Mann Lake
Media Contact: 713-500-3030