The importance of the Perinatal Outreach Program during a woman’s pregnancy

September 1, 2022 /

Every year, there are new services that Kern County has to offer for women who are pregnant.

August 25 to August 31 is Black Breastfeeding Week. As National Breastfeeding Month is still being celebrated the “Perinatal Outreach Program,” which is known as P.O.P is another program that is beneficial for pregnant women in order to have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy newborn baby. 

 “The goal of P.O.P is to improve the health of women, infants and their families with an emphasis on reducing maternal, fetal, and infant morbidity and mortality,” Public Health Nurse Ashleigh Acevedo said. 

Acevedo explained that through P.O.P they seek to reduce barriers to care for birthing women at risk for adverse outcomes by increasing access to prenatal care services, prenatal education, community resources, and to support families in Kern County.

On top of that, P.O.P provides individualized case management for each client enrolled in our program from the time of enrollment through the completion of the program which occurs at the infant’s first birthday. P.O.P not only focuses on Pregnant women and their health they also focus on giving parents perinatal education.

“Our program focuses on providing education, resources and support for each client in a way that meets the specific client needs while promoting self-advocacy,” Health Education Assistant Jasmene Del Aguila stated. 

 In addition, the education topics address social determinants of health as well as provide comprehensive perinatal education and parenting support. Perinatal education is important during pregnancy because it allows the mother along with the family members to see how well the baby is developing during and after pregnancy. The number of educational sessions a woman can have is determined by how far along she is in her pregnancy. 

“Based on how far along the client is in their pregnancy at the time of enrollment will determine the number of educational sessions and topics covered with client prenatally,” Guerrero said.

Guerrero explained that their goal with the educational sessions is to provide information that is relevant to their client, address questions or concerns, and match education topics to their client’s needs. 

Each P.O.P session lasts between 20 – 30 minutes with the option of a telephone call appointment, a video conference appointment, or a home visit appointment; it all depends on the clients’ accommodations and needs. 

 In order to be a part of P.O.P, clients must be referred through a variety of medical and community partners or clients are also welcomed to self-refer or refer a friend by completing a referral form that can be accessed on the Public Health’s Website: or by calling 661 – 321- 3000 and asking for the Perinatal Outreach Program (P.O.P). 

The Perinatal Outreach Program is located at the Kern County Public Health Department 1800 Mount Vernon Ave, Bakersfield CA 93306. It is open Monday – Friday from 8AM to 5PM. 

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