The Life Center of Hernando says, “What could be more important than getting your little one off to a Healthy Start?”
Say “yes” to a healthy start for you and your baby from the time you first learn you are pregnant!
Healthy Start provides maternal and child health services to improve pregnancy outcomes and help children get a healthy start in life. Healthy Start offers services when you are pregnant or between pregnancies, and for your baby from birth to age three.
Services may include education and counseling in childbirth, breastfeeding, parenting, nutrition, smoking cessation, between pregnancy care and more.
Find out if you qualify for services by saying “yes” to Healthy Start screenings. Every prenatal care provider in the state of Florida is required to offer a screening to all pregnant women. Every hospital is required to offer a screening to every newborn. Screenings are simply a set of questions to determine if there are any risks that could affect your pregnancy and your baby’s growth or development.
For more information contact your Healthy Start Care Coordinator at (352) 540-6800 x82119 or call 1-800-451-BABY.
Immunizations play an important role in protecting your child.
Hernando County has two clinic locations. In Spring Hill in Hernando County immunizations are available at the Spring Hill Health Clinic. Immunizations for children 0 to 18 years are available Monday thru Friday from 8:00am -11:00am and from 1:00pm to 3:30 pm. Although walk-ins are welcome, appointments are encouraged. To make an appointment, call 352-540-6800. Spring Hill Clinic address: 7551 Forests Oaks Boulevard
Immunizations are also available at the Brooksville Clinic. Immunizations for children 0 to 18 years of age are available on Tuesdays and Friday from 8:00am to 11:00am and from 1:00 pm to 3:30pm. Although walk-ins are welcome, appointments are encouraged. To make an appointment, call 352-540-6800. Brooksville clinic address: 300 S. Main Street
Childhood Immunizations: High-risk infants are tracked to ensure that they begin and are up to date with their immunizations. Children should begin receiving vaccines at about the age of 2 months. By the time they are 2 years old they should have received 15 shots protecting them against a variety of diseases, including:
- Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
- Varicella ( chicken pox)
- Haemophilus (HIB)
- Hepatitis B
- Pneumococcal Infection
Most children are covered under the federal program of vaccines for children, so there is no cost to parents.
Immunization Record Request: To request a copy of your child’s Hernando County Health Department’s immunization record, the complete name, date of birth and social security number is required. Parents with proper identification can pick up a copy of the immunization record from any County Health Department Office in the state of Florida.
Child Care Assistance
Low income families in Florida can receive help for paying child care costs from the School Readiness Program. The state can provide grants and various forms of financial assistance so that parents can pay for early education expenses. The program offers qualified, lower income families financial assistance through a wide variety of resources. The overall goal is to help parents in becoming financially self-sufficient and to also help the child get access to the education that they need.
This program will assist parents and provide them with the ability to become financially self – sufficient by either gaining a new skill or starting a new job. It will keep parents participating in educational or training activities, or it may allow them to remain in the workforce. Florida will in effect help working families afford quality early learning services
A number of conditions need to be met by applicants, including income limits. Many of the families that enroll are recipients of temporary cash assistance who meet federal government work requirements. Others who tend to benefit are parents who are verified homeless, teenage parents, and victims of domestic violence as working poor families of children with special healthcare needs and disabilities.
Parents who enroll for the School Readiness Program need to also be either participating in an educational activity or employed. For example, you can be attending trade school or college at least 20 hours per week and still qualify for assistance with child care. Families who do enroll may need to pay a co payment based on family size and their total income, so minimal fees may be required to be paid by enrollees. Depending on your income, families may be assigned a co-pay amount that will be based on the state’s sliding fee scale. Since funding and resources are limited, priority is given to children who have been determined to be at risk of abuse, those with parents that are economically disadvantaged, or children with a disability or special needs.
In Hernando County to learn more about the School Readiness program or other financial assistance, please call your county’s Early Learning Coalition. Or another option is to dial 1-866-357-3239 in order to get additional information or referrals.