Nurse-Family Partnership (NFP) is a community health program designed specifically for low-income, first-time mothers. Enrolled mothers are paired with an NFP-trained registered nurse who conducts regularly scheduled home visits from pregnancy through age 2. The goals of NFP are to (1) improve pregnancy outcomes by helping women engage in good preventive health practices, including thorough prenatal care from their healthcare providers, improving their diets, and reducing their use of cigarettes, alcohol and illegal substances; (2) improve child health and development by helping parents provide responsible and competent care; and (3) improve the economic self-sufficiency of the family by helping parents develop a vision for their own future, plan future pregnancies, continue their education and find work.
To be eligible for NFP, mothers must meet NFP low-income criteria at intake, be enrolled early in their pregnancy, and be able to receive their first NFP home visit by the end of week 28 of the pregnancy.
- Infancy and Toddlerhood
- Poverty (Distal Influence)
- Decay: abandoned buildings, substandard housing (Distal Influence)
- Neighborhood poverty (Distal Influence)
- Prosocial norms, informal social control (Distal Influence)
- Healthy community norms (Distal Influence)
- Family poverty (Distal Influence)
- Neighborhood design, land use (Distal Influence)
Nurse-Family Partnership National Service Office 1900 Grant Street, Suite 400 Denver, CO 80203 (p) 303-327-4240 (p) 866-864-5226 (f) 303-327-4260
How it Operates
NFP-trained registered nurses begin work with enrolled mothers during their first trimester and continue until the child is 2 years old (a total of approximately 64 planned home visits). Home-visits are conducted weekly during the first month of the program to establish rapport between the mother and the nurse home visitor. Subsequent visits are scheduled biweekly until the child’s birth. However, the number and frequency of home visits is modifiable based on the stages of pregnancy and the needs of the parent. After the baby is born, home visits occur weekly for approximately 6 weeks. Subsequent visits are scheduled biweekly until the child is 21-months old. The last visits are scheduled on a monthly basis.
NFP nurses utilize visit-by-visit guidelines highlighting challenges that parents may encounter during pregnancy and during the first two years of a child’s life. NFP nurses seek to (1) promote improvements in mothers’ behavior that are theorized to impact pregnancy outcomes, child health and development, and parents’ life course; (2) enhance social support among family and friends; and (3) link mothers’ and other family members with other health and human services. Throughout the pregnancy, nurses track mothers’ diets, tobacco use, and drug use, with a particular emphasis on making healthy choices. Mothers’ are provided education regarding pregnancy complications, STDs, and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. After the birth of the child, the NFP curriculum focuses on promoting positive parent-child interactions.
The NFP National Service Office can assist communities in implementing and maintaining an NFP program by assist with program development, nursing practice, program quality support, marketing and communications, and public policy and government affairs. This includes working with key local and state community stakeholders in assessment, planning, and sustainability; educating and training registered nurses and supervisors in program delivery; collecting and evaluating program data; building community awareness about the program; and identifying state and federal funding to support sustainability.
It is recommended that registered nurses who are formally trained in women’s and child’s health (e.g., maternal and child health nurses) serve as nurse home-visitors or supervisors. Nurses can join a local NFP agency and the Nursing Practice staff will provide a support system to help nurses receive the education and resources to conduct effective home-visits. The nurse educational training program is available as on-site or via distance learning. NFP agencies are located in nearly thirty US states. Current agency locations can be accessed via the website. NFP nurses carry caseloads of approximately 20-25 families and receive weekly supervision.
Sampling of Key References Supporting Evidence Base for the Program
Olds, D. L. (2006). The nurse-family partnership: An evidence-based preventive intervention. Infant Mental Health Journal, 27, 5-25. ↩
Olds, D. L., Hill, P. L., O'Brien, R., Racine, D., & Moritz, P. (2003). Taking preventive intervention to scale: The nurse-family partnership. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 10, 278-290. ↩
Boris, N. W., et al. (2006). The process and promise of mental health augmentation of nurse home-visiting programs: Data from the Louisiana Nurse-Family Partnership. Infant Mental Health Journal, 27, 26-40. ↩
O’Brien, R. A. (2005). Translating a research intervention into community practice: The Nurse Family Partnership. The Journal of Primary Prevention, 26, 241-257. ↩
Olds, D.L., Eckenrode, J., Henderson, C.R., Jr., Kitzman, H., Powers, J., & Cole, R., et al. (1997). Long-term effects of home visitation on maternal life course and child abuse and neglect: 15-year follow-up of a randomized trial. Journal of the American Medical Association, 278, 637–643. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R., Chamberlin, R., & Tatelbaum, R. (1986). Preventing child abuse and neglect: A randomized trial of nurse home visitation. Pediatrics, 78, 65–78. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R. Jr., Cole, R., Eckenrode, J., Kitzman, H., & Luckey, D., et al. (1998). Long-term effects of nurse home visitation on children’s criminal and antisocial behavior: 15-year follow-up of a randomized trial. Journal of the American Medical Association, 280, 1238–1244. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R., & Kitzman, H. (1994). Does prenatal and infancy nurse home visitation have enduring effects on qualities of parental caregiving and child health at 25 to 50 months of life? Pediatrics, 98, 89–98. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R., Kitzman, H., & Cole, R. (1995). Effects of prenatal and infancy nurse home visitation on surveillance of child maltreatment. Pediatrics, 95, 365–372. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R., & Tatelbaum, R. (1994). Intellectual impairment in children of women who smoke cigarettes during pregnancy. Pediatrics, 93, 221–227. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R., & Tatelbaum, R. (1994). Prevention of intellectual impairment in children of women who smoke cigarettes during pregnancy. Pediatrics, 93, 228–233. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson, C.R., Tatelbaum, R., & Chamberlin, R. (1986). Improving the delivery of prenatal care and outcomes of pregnancy: A randomized trial of nurse home visitation. Pediatrics, 77, 16–28. ↩
Olds, D.L., Henderson C.R., Jr., Tatelbaum R., & Chamberlin, R. (1998) Improving the life-course development of socially disadvantaged mothers: A randomized trial of nurse home visitation. American Journal of Public Health, 78, 11, 1436–1445. ↩
Olds, D.L., Hill, P.L., O’Brien, R., Racine, D., & Moritz, P. (2002) Taking preventive intervention to scale: The Nurse–Family Partnership. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 10, 278–290. ↩
Olds, D.L., Hill, P., Robinson, J., Song, N., & Little, C. (2002) Update on home visiting for pregnant women and parents of young children. Current Problems in Pediatrics, 30, 105–148. ↩
Olds, D.L., & Kitzman, H. (1993). Review of research on home visiting. The Future of Children, 3, 51–92. ↩
Olds, D.L., Kitzman, H., Cole, R., & Robinson, J. (1997). Theoretical foundations of a program of home visitation for pregnant women and parents of young children. Journal of Community Psychology, 25, 9–25. ↩
Olds, D.L., Pettitt, L.M., Robinson, J., Eckenrode, J., Kitzman, H., Cole, R., et al (1998). Reducing risks for antisocial behavior with a program of prenatal and early childhood home visitation. Journal of Community Psychology, 25, 65–83. ↩