The FBP approach to promoting health is a paradigm shift from the way that healthcare services are typically delivered in New Mexico and in the rest of the U.S. The FBP represents a reorientation of child and human services toward early investment and prevention away from attempting to “treat” poor outcomes later in the life cycle. Investing resources in early childhood produces better outcomes, saves money and improves quality of life in a community.
At the core of any successful home visiting program are relationships because all human development occurs both through and within relationships. This approach supports and respects each family’s unique abilities as well as their ethnic, financial, cultural, and linguistic diversity. All goals are family-driven.
Because infancy and early childhood are times of rapid growth and development, the First Born Program completes assessments and screenings at regular intervals to ensure that children and their caregivers are integrated into each community’s continuum of care.
Because infants and toddlers are profoundly influenced by their parents, other family members, and their community, services are integrated with their families and community.
Caseload size allows home visitors to devote adequate time to plan and build strong relationships with children, families and community.
The First Born staff is knowledgeable about infant and toddler development and is experienced in working with children and their families. The First Born training protocols are comprehensive.
First Born staff receives weekly one-on-one supervision and on-going training opportunities and continuing education.
The First Born Program has comprehensive and flexible core curricula written specifically for FBP. The scope of the curricula includes the prenatal period, the first year of life, and the toddler years. The curricula are copyrighted, updated frequently, and are based on current prenatal and early childhood research.
For families involved with more than one service provider, services are provided in a coordinated fashion.
Services are offered initially on a weekly basis to meet the needs of families. Service intensity may increase or decrease to meet the changing needs of families.
Independent, external program evaluation has been a priority and key component of the First Born® Program since its inception. The Program has been evaluated by New Mexico State University and the RAND Corporation.
Transitions from hospital to home, from FBP into a more intensive intervention program or from FBP into a program designed for three-to-five year olds are carefully planned to ensure continuity of services for the child and family.