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First Lady Rauner Visits Freeport To Highlight Newborn Home-Visit Pilot Program

Illinois First Lady Diana Rauner visited a Freeport hospital to highlight Illinois Family Connects, a program that provides home visits for newborns. 

Officials with FHN Family Health Center in Burchard Hills say a community nurse will visit new mothers about three weeks after they give birth.  They'll conduct wellness checks and provide support in areas such as breastfeeding and dealing with postpartum depression.

Rauner co-chairs the Illinois Home Visiting Task Force, which launched the initiative through a public-private partnership.  The program was first tested in Durham, North Carolina, and FHN says every dollar invested saves about $3 in emergency health costs.

Both Stephenson and Peoria Counties are operating pilot programs, and Freeport-area officials sought out expectant mothers as early as April 1.