University of South Carolina Arnold School of Public Health health services policy and management research assistant professor, Dr. Elizabeth Radcliff and colleagues from the Rural and Minority Health Research Center and Children’s Trust of South Carolina have published a paper in the Journal of Community Health. In this publication, they examine whether the most at-risk communities are being served by investigating the reach of a South Carolina home visiting program.
In addition to individual-level characteristics, characteristics of the social and physical environments in which individuals reside may adversely impact health outcomes. Careful attention to the role of “place” can result in programs that successfully deliver services to those most at risk.
With this research project, the authors conducted a retrospective, cross-sectional study using geocoded residential addresses from 3090 households enrolled in a South Carolina home visiting program between 2013 and 2016. They analyzed corresponding years of data for maternal and child health outcomes obtained from vital records data.
They found that service delivery gaps existed despite a statewide, county-level needs assessment conducted prior to program implementation. Their findings suggest methods to identify specific areas of need, as an ongoing effort toward program improvement.