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Research Basis

Partners for a Healthy Baby 

Informed by a robust body of research

The latest research and clinical guidelines, compiled into evidence-based strategies for home visitors.


Partners for a Healthy Baby is a research-based parenting curriculum developed by a multidisciplinary FSU faculty team with expertise in obstetric medicine, early childhood development, psychology, infant mental health, social work, and early intervention. Using the latest research and clinical guidelines from their respective disciplines, the faculty team compiled evidence-based strategies for home visitors to use when addressing issues facing expectant and new families.

The research-based content in the Partners curriculum addresses a wide range of topics associated with the goals of most home visiting programs including: improved prenatal health; healthy birth outcomes; bonding and attachment; positive parenting; enhanced child health and development; infant mental health; economic self-sufficiency; and family stability. Well-trained home visitors choose topics in the curriculum that align with family needs and their program outcomes.

The FSU Partners for a Healthy Baby curriculum is widely used in many evidence-based home visiting programs including Early Head Start, Healthy Families, Healthy Start, and other MIECHV home visiting models with promising practices that are building their evidence base.

Full Research Basis for: Before Baby Arrives

Full Research Basis for: Baby’s 1st Year, Baby’s 2nd Year, and Toddler’s 3rd Year


The FSU Partners for a Healthy Baby curriculum has been successfully used by many different home visiting programs to achieve positive outcomes as documented in numerous studies.

Findings include: 

  • decreased incidence of low birth weight deliveries;1 2

  • fewer small-for-gestational-age babies;1

  • fewer repeat pregnancies;3

  • reduced rates of abuse and neglect,

  • increased rates of up-to-date immunizations and enrollment in a medical home;2 4 

  • significantly greater likelihood mothers will read to their children;3

  • improved child development outcomes;5

  • increased maternal responsiveness of teen mother,6

  • reduced rates of maternal depression and increased rates of breastfeeding.7 8

  1. Lee, E., Mitchell-Herzfeld, S., Lowenfels, A., Greene, R., Dorabawila, V., & DuMont, K. (2009). Reducing low birth weight through home visitation: A randomized controlled trial. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 36(2), 154-160.

  2. Virginia Department of Health. (2008). Virginia resource mothers program annual report. Richmond, VA: Author.

  3. Williams, Stern, & Associates. (2005). Healthy Families Florida evaluation report: January 1, 1999–December 31, 2003. Retrieved from Evaluation_1999-2003.pdf

  4. Knight, S., & Patterson, J. (2008, May 6). “Stepping Stones” intensive home visiting program for pregnant and parenting teens. Presentation to North Carolina Smart Start Conference, Greensboro, North Carolina.

  5. York, V., Sparling, J., & Ramey, C. (2001). Cradle to classroom evaluation. Unpublished manuscript.

  6. Deutscher, B., Fewell, R., & Gross, M. (2006). Enhancing the interactions of teenage mothers and their at-risk children: Effectiveness of a maternal-focused intervention. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, 26(4), 194-205.

  7. Hadley, B., Rudolph, K., Mogul, M., & Perry, D. (2014). Providing home visiting to high-risk pregnant and postpartum families: e development and evaluation of the MOMobile Program. Zero to Three, 35(2), 40-48.

  8. Perry, D. (2015). Policy Brief: Partners for Healthy Baby Curriculum Study. Unpublished Policy Brief

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