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Impact of a Social Support Program on Teenage Prenatal Care Use and Pregnancy Outcomes


Rogers, Mary M.; Peoples-Sheps, Mary D.; & Suchindran, Chirayath M. (1996). Impact of a Social Support Program on Teenage Prenatal Care Use and Pregnancy Outcomes. Journal of Adolescent Health, 19(2), 132-140.


Purpose: This study evaluated the impact of a resource mothers program (RMP) on prenatal care use, low birth weight (LBW), and preterm birth (PTB). The intervention used paraprofessional women to provide social support to pregnant teenagers through home visiting.
Methods: Data were obtained by linking RMP, health department, and birth certificate data. Outcomes for primiparous teenagers were compared across two main study groups: a RMP group (n = 1,901) and a comparison group from counties in which the program was not offered (n = 4,613). Multiple logistic regression was used to estimate the effects of program participation with simultaneous adjustment for age, race, marital status, and previous pregnancies. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated.
Results: Resource mothers program teenagers were more likely to initiate prenatal care early (OR = 1.48; CI = 1.32-1.66) and to receive adequate prenatal care (OR = 1.58; CI = 1.40-1.78) than teenagers in the other counties. The program had no significant effect on LBW, but unmarried teenagers in the RMP group were less likely to have a PTB than unmarried teenagers in the other counties with an OR of 0.81 (CI = 0.70-0.95). These findings were supported by analyses using a second comparison group.
Conclusions: Given that PTB contributes heavily to infant mortality, the program's effect on PTB is promising.


Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published


Journal Title

Journal of Adolescent Health


Rogers, Mary M.
Peoples-Sheps, Mary D.
Suchindran, Chirayath M.