With Launch of Nurture NJ Strategic Plan, NJ Focuses on Achieving Equity in Maternal and Infant Health

On January 23, 2020, Nurture NJ, a statewide campaign to reduce maternal and infant mortality and morbidity, announced the development of a comprehensive, actionable strategic plan focused on improving outcomes and achieving equity in maternal and infant health. The public/private partnership is led by the Office of the First Lady of New Jersey, Tammy Murphy, and funded by The Nicholson Foundation and the Community Health Acceleration Partnership. The plan sets the bold goal of reducing maternal mortality by fifty percent and eliminating racial disparities in birth outcomes.

First Lady Tammy Murphy

First Lady Tammy Murphy announces the launch of the Nurture NJ strategic planning process on January 23, 2020 at Henry J. Austin Health Center in Trenton. (l-r: Assemblywoman Verlina Reynolds-Jackson, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson, Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter, First Lady Tammy Murphy, Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli, Dr. Vijaya Hogan).

To begin the development of the strategic plan, Nurture NJ is bringing a team led by Dr. Vijaya Hogan, a perinatal epidemiologist currently serving as a Clinical Associate professor at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at UNC-Chapel Hill, adjunct faculty in the Dept of Obstetrics and Gynecology at UNC School of Medicine, and a Research Fellow at the Sheps Center for Health Services Research. Hogan and her team will review national best practices and complete a statewide assessment of existing infrastructure to support improvements in maternal and infant health, including community investments, clinical and social factors, private sector engagement, and policy development. In addition, the assessment will include speaking directly with women across the state; interviewing up to 18 state collaborating agencies; working with leading state health providers; and talking to a range of community-based organizations.

“The Community Health Acceleration Partnership and The Nicholson Foundation are committed to working with the Office of the First Lady to eliminate disparities in maternal and infant mortality," said Wendy McWeeny, Director of US Initiatives at the Community Health Acceleration Partnership. “We are thrilled Dr. Vijaya Hogan and her team are collaborating with all of us to assess existing systems and develop an integrated, cross-sector Nurture NJ plan.”

Media Coverage

Nicholson Foundation staff

Staff members from The Nicholson Foundation attend the announcement of the launch of the Nurture NJ strategic plan process. (l-r: Arturo Brito, Madison McHugh, Shannon Riley-Ayers, Kimberly Boller, Colette Lamothe-Galette, Kevin McManemin, Raquel Mazon Jeffers, Wesley Wei).