Maternal Substance Use Disorders & Substance Exposed Newborns Collaborative

In partnership with Hallmark Health System and Jewish Children & Family Services, the MDAO has been at the forefront of developing a community-based continuum of care network known as the Care Collaborative. The network is a collaboration of professionals who offer critical support services to mothers, while working to address the related health and safety needs of their newborns. The network is comprised of healthcare providers, mental health clinicians, social service professionals, and child welfare advocates.

Recognizing that mothers and women of childbearing age are in need of more specialized intervention, treatment and education, the Care Collaborative has been meeting regularly to establish best practices for early intervention and comprehensive treatment to better serve families affected by maternal substance use disorders and Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome.

The need for this specialized focus is supported by recent data collected from the Massachusetts Ambulance Trip Record Information System (MATRIS), showing that from 2014 through June of 2016 licensed EMTs and paramedics responded to 794 opioid-related calls for women age 18-35 in Middlesex County -- an age group most likely to either have young children or who may become pregnant in the near future.

Through outreach, education, training, and technical assistance, the Care Collaborative promotes trauma-informed interventions and dyadic-focused approaches across all levels of the care continuum.