Woman's Hospital Updates State Legislators on GRACE Program Success

February 03, 2020

GRACE Program has helped more than 80 pregnant women with opioid use disorder

BATON ROUGE, La. – The GRACE Program at Woman’s Hospital has helped more than 80 pregnant women with opioid use disorder since it launched in 2018, and the hospital plans to grow its work addressing the opioid crisis through new grants and programs in the coming years.

Members of the Louisiana Legislative Women's Caucus visited Woman’s Hospital on Tuesday for a tour of the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and to learn more about how GRACE has helped Louisiana women overcome addiction. GRACE, which stands for Guiding Recovery and Creating Empowerment, is a care coordination program that connects pregnant women with opioid use disorder to treatment and support resources in the community. Funded by a grant from the United Health Foundation, it is the only program of its kind in Louisiana and one of few in the nation. 

“The GRACE Program has shown that we can make a real difference in health outcomes for this vulnerable group of women and their infants,” said Barbara Griffith, MD, president & CEO of Woman’s Hospital. “We are grateful for the support of United Health and are excited to enter into the next chapter of our battle against opioid addiction.”

In addition to the grant from United Health, Woman’s Hospital was one of two hospitals in the state selected by the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) to participate in the NOWS Pilot Project, helping the state create a plan to improve outcomes associated with neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome (NOWS). The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services also selected Louisiana as one of 10 states to participate in the Maternal Opioid Misuse (MOM) model program. Woman’s will be the care delivery partner working with LDH to address gaps in the care of pregnant and postpartum Medicaid members with opioid use disorder.

“In our new partnership with LDH, we will be providing an even greater level of care coordination, along with a longer time frame of treatment for our patients,” added Dr. Griffith. “And with expanded outreach efforts to physicians and community partners, we can begin helping women as soon as they know they are pregnant.”

For more information on the GRACE Program or how to refer a woman in need, call 866-336-4580 or visit womans.org/grace.