Kudirat Ariyo and her husband came to the United States from Nigeria to visit family and friends in New York last year. Not long after, they moved to Pennsylvania. Mrs. Ariyo learned about ChesPenn from a friend at church and began her prenatal care at our Chester site. She was surprised but pleased to learn that she was carrying twins, although both families have multiple sets of twins. “I was so happy when I discovered that we were having twins,” she shared. Because the Ariyos were new to the U.S. and needed resources, they were referred to Porsha Harris, one of ChesPenn’s Social Services Coordinators, who connected them with Catholic Social Services, WIC, and the County Assistance Office so they could access the financial, food, and housing they would need for their expanding family.
The twins, Muhammad and Arafat, were delivered by Cesarean section in December. The parents recently brought them in for their 7th week check and their pediatrician, Dr. Stephanie Tanner Walsh related that they are thriving. “They are both growing well on breast and formula supplementation. During our visit many family members from their home country of Nigeria were anxious to see the babies and congratulate the new parents via phone.
This continuity of care is virtually unique to community health centers, where adult and pediatric medical care, OB/GYN services, dental and behavioral care, as well as social service coordination are all available at the same location. The family became comfortable coming into our health center and getting to know staff through the course of the pregnancy, received support accessing vital benefits, and then were given a true warm hand-off from their obstetrician to their pediatrician, whose office is just down the hall. This benefits mothers and babies as providers are able to share information freely and the family develops a high comfort level with the entire staff at the site. In a few months, our Public Health Dental Hygienist will stop in at a well-baby visit to talk to mom about early steps in dental hygiene and will offer to schedule a first dental visit for the twins. We are looking forward to watching the twins grow up and to continuing to care for the whole family.