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Perinatal Hope Program at Allegheny Health Network

Perinatal (Postpartum) Hope Program 

The Perinatal Hope Program at Allegheny Health Network’s West Penn Hospital provides individualized treatment and support for pregnant women who are struggling with addiction. We are committed to helping mothers get the medical, social, and educational services they need to deliver healthier babies. 

Expert specialists work together to coordinate your care during and after your pregnancy. They understand the difficulty of ending substance abuse and the level of care necessary for pregnant women and newborns. The care team also coordinates tests, doctor consultations, and counseling for your convenience.

Our services

Pregnancy care
We understand that getting to multiple appointments can be difficult. We have developed our outpatient program to include your prenatal visit, medication visit, and counseling session all on the same day. We will also provide referrals to other experts, if needed, including our Maternal Fetal Medicine (high-risk obstetrics) specialists, anesthesiologists, neonatologists, and lactation consultants.

Medication-assisted treatment
The Perinatal Hope Program offers outpatient treatment for pregnant women with opioid addiction. We make Subutex/Buprenorphine available when appropriate.

Drug & alcohol counseling
We provide on-site assessments, referrals, and counseling through POWER, the Pennsylvania Organization for Women in Early Recovery. Participants can enroll in peer mentoring services, if interested. 

The health and wellness of mother and baby are very important to us. We provide ongoing education on a variety of topics throughout your pregnancy. Our focus on healthy lifestyle choices includes selecting healthy foods for you and your baby, in-home safety, and quitting smoking. We also host group sessions where you can ask our anesthesiologists and neonatologists about your upcoming delivery.

Delivery care
Babies will be delivered at one of AHN’s four hospitals with obstetric (OB) services. There, they can get all the care they need in our Level II or III neonatal intensive care units (NICU), if necessary. Babies born to mothers in the program will be monitored for up to five days for any signs or symptoms of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) and provided treatment, as needed.

  • What is neonatal abstinence syndrome?
    NAS occurs when a pregnant woman takes opiates or narcotic drugs, such as prescription pain medications, methadone, buprenorphine, or illegal drugs such as heroin. These and other substances pass through the mother’s placenta to the baby. If this occurs, the baby may be drug-dependent at birth. When babies are no longer getting the drug after birth, they may experience withdrawal symptoms, which are part of NAS.

Postpartum care
You continue to attend medication and counseling visits through the Perinatal Hope Program up until your postpartum appointment. At this appointment, in addition to checking your physical health, we screen for postpartum depression. Your care team will then coordinate the transfer of your records to another local doctor so you can keep getting services. They will also coordinate any other referrals you may need to:

  • Primary care physicians
  • Pediatricians
  • Early intervention specialists
  • The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
  • Transportation services

The Fresh Start Program

Patients in the Perinatal Hope Program are also referred to The Children’s Institute of Pittsburgh’s Fresh Start Program. This is a partnership between AHN and The Children’s Institute of Pittsburgh. The program provides additional developmental and rehabilitative services for babies with NAS:

  • Developmental screenings by a pediatrician
  • Support of therapeutic specialists
  • Breastfeeding consultations
  • Connections to resources and education
  • Private rooms for mother and baby to enhance bonding

Through the Fresh Start Program, a registered nurse and a health coach from the Care Coordination team begin meeting with you during your pregnancy. They also help you set mother and baby goals and offer guidance to help you reach them. Mothers and babies are also offered Care Coordination services for up to three years after birth. This includes follow-up care and well visits.

Meet the team

Our care team understands that addiction is a disease that is treatable. The Perinatal Hope Program is designed to be a safe, caring, and supportive atmosphere. This is to help women work toward overall wellness for themselves and their babies.

Our team includes:

Ashley Schultz, MS – Maternal Addiction Program Coordinator
Katrina Siders – Nurse Practitioner
Dr. Mark Caine – Lead Physician, OB-GYN, MFM
Dr. Eric Lantzman – Physician, OB-GYN
Lauren Narbey, CNM. 

If you are pregnant and struggling with addiction, you are not alone. We can help.

For more information, or to inquire about enrollment, please call (412) 578-5575.

Perinatal Hope Program
West Penn Hospital
4815 Liberty Avenue, Suite 315
Pittsburgh, PA 15224

Forbs Family Medicine
2550 Mosside Boulevard
Suite 500
Monroeville, PA 15146

Allegheny Health Midwives
Jefferson Women's Health
575 Coal Valley Road, Suite 209A
Jefferson Hills, PA 15025