Pregnant women and single mothers may be experiencing particular food insecurity and hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic. In Los Angeles County, there are several programs and services that help families who have been affected by recent events:
– Home Visiting Programs are still enrolling new clients and serving families in LA County. Home Visitors provide support and services during pregnancy; coaches parents on how to support children during difficult times; offers techniques for lowering stress; and connects parents to educational training, job opportunities, and other resources. For the health and safety of our clients, all home visiting programs have temporarily moved all in-person visits to telehealth visits to continue providing support to all our families. For more information, call (213) 639-6434.
– MAMA’s Program is providing services to pregnant women and those who have recently delivered during the COVID-9 crisis by offering telehealth telephonic and video visits for medical and behavioral health services, social care navigation, and nursing support. The telehealth platform lessens the face-to-face contact for these women without decreasing the number of visits they require or desire. Pregnant women in the safety net who need prenatal and immediate postpartum services can call 844-37-MAMAS for appointments and enhanced perinatal services.
– Doula services provide emotional support, physical comfort, education, and advocacy to African-American pregnant women and persons during pregnancy, childbirth, and the newborn period. Call (213) 639-6448 for more information and eligibility requirements.
– Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Program provides healthy foods and other resources to pregnant women and families with a child under 5 years of age. For more information and eligibility requirements, text APPLY to 91997, visit phfewic.org or call (888) 942-2229.
– Cash aid and food purchasing services are available through CalWORKS. This program provides monthly financial assistance to help pay for housing, food, utilities, clothing, medical care and other necessary expenses. For more information and eligibility requirements, call (866) 613-3777.
– Early childhood education and childcare services are available for essential workers. Call (888) 92CHILD (922-4453) or visit lacoe.edu/childcare for more information and resources.
– Emotional support services are available for pregnant and parenting families feeling anxious, panicked, or stressed. Mental health professionals are available at (800) 854-7771.
– California Women, Infants and Children (WIC) services are available and include nutritious foods and more resources that are available to all eligible families affected by COVID-19. WIC welcomes military families, migrant families, fathers, foster parents and legal guardians with eligible children. If your income has been affected by recent events, and you are:
– Breastfeeding (up to the infant’s first birthday)
– Non-breastfeeding women (until the infant is six months old)
– Women up to six months after a pregnancy loss
– For infants and children, up to the child’s fifth birthday.
To find out if you’re eligible, California residents can start by texting APPLY to 91997, call (888) 942-2229 or visit phfewic.org.
If you want to learn more about the risks of COVID-19 to pregnant women, visit COVID-19: Advice to Pregnant Women. If you are pregnant and you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 or you think you may have contracted the virus, visit covid19.lacounty.gov/testing to schedule an appointment.
Lastly, pregnant women should take the same preventative measures as the general public to avoid infection. You can help stop the spread of COVID-19 by taking these actions:
– Stay home. Avoid contact with people who are sick.
– Have food delivered to your home so you can avoid checkout lines at grocery stores.
– Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or using the restroom.
– Clean and disinfect your home to remove germs: practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces (for example: tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks & cell phones).