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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote, and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, and community efforts.

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Healthy Start

Contact the Maternal and Child Health Section

  •  850-245-4465



    Mailing Address

    Maternal and Child Health Section 

    4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin A13 

    Tallahassee, FL 32399-1721 

Healthy Start is a free home visiting program that provides education and care coordination to pregnant women and families of children under the age of three. The goal of the program is to lower risk factors associated with preterm birth, low birth weight, infant mortality and poor developmental outcomes.

Healthy Start offers:

  • Home visitation.
  • Prenatal and parenting education.
  • Interconception education including reproductive planning.
  • Stress management education.
  • Care coordination to help families learn about resources available in the community and assistance in accessing those services.

Find a Healthy Start Coalition Location Near You

History of Healthy Start

Florida's Healthy Start initiative was signed into law on June 4, 1991 and provides for universal risk screening of all Florida's pregnant women and newborn infants to identify those at risk of poor birth, health, and developmental outcomes.

Healthy Start Standards and Guidelines

Healthy Start Standards and Guidelines are intended to guide implementation of Healthy Start. Healthy Start coalitions and providers are accountable for delivering services in compliance with these standards as outlined in administrative rules in the Florida Administrative Code.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: The Healthy Start System

Chapter 2: Information Security Requirements

Chapter 3: Prenatal and Infant Risk Screening

Chapter 4: Coordinated Intake and Referral

Chapter 5: Healthy Start Initial Assessment

Chapter 6: Healthy Start Program

Chapter 7: Healthy Start Services Prenatal Education

Chapter 8: Healthy Start Services Parenting Education and Support

Chapter 9: Healthy Start Services Interconception Education and Counseling

Chapter 10: Healthy Start Services Stress Management Education

Chapter 11: Healthy Start Services Care Coordination

Chapter 12: Substance Abusing Pregnant Women, Substance Exposed Children and Their Families

Chapter 13: Perinatal Depression Screening

Chapter 14: Intimate Partner Violence Screening

Chapter 15: Substance Use Screening

Chapter 16: Tobacco Use Screening

Chapter 17: Child Development Screening

Chapter 18: Healthy Start Services Breastfeeding Education and Support

Chapter 19: Healthy Start Services Childbirth Education

Chapter 20: Healthy Start Services Nutrition Counseling

Chapter 21: Healthy Start Services Psychosocial Counseling

Chapter 22: Healthy Start Services Tobacco Education and Cessation Counseling

Chapter 23: Healthy Start Coding

Chapter 24: Healthy Start Board of Directors

Chapter 25: Fiscal Accounability

Chapter 26: Community Involvement

Chapter 27: Outreach - Participant Identification, Provider Recruitment, and Community Education

Chapter 28: Healthy Start System Assurances

Chapter 29: Performance Based Contracts and Memoranda of Agreement

Chapter 30: Quality Management / Program Improvement

Chapter 31: Transition and Interagency Agreements

Appendix: Standards and Guidelines

Appendix A:  Glossary: Terms and Definitions

Appendix B:  Abbreviations

Appendix C:  Examples of Documenting Assessment Forms

Appendix D:  Prenatal and Infant Risk Matrixes

Appendix E:  Confidentiality and Security Statement of Understanding

Appendix F:  Other Resources

Healthy Start Screening Forms and Information

Prenatal Risk Screening Forms

Infant Risk Screening Form

Healthy Start Reporting

The Healthy Start Reports provides prenatal and infant risk screening and service reports to county health departments, Healthy Start coalitions, and Florida Department of Health staff.

Health Management System: Entering Medicaid Insurance Information

This user guide addresses how to enter Insurance information in the Health Management System.

For a printable presentation that outlines the Healthy Start side of HMS, please click the link below.