Tracy Russell Executive Director Mother and Child Health Coalition
The link between maternal health and access to health care is undeniable. As we examine maternal morbidity at Nurture KC’s Annual Meeting on July 21, we’ll look at several factors that lead to a “near miss,” not the least of which is Medicaid eligibility. The Kansas General Assembly concluded its legislative session by voting down floor amendments that would expand Medicaid eligibility and the Missouri legislature chose not to fund a voter-approved constitutional amendment to do the same. The Missouri legislature also failed to fund existing Medicaid during the regular session, jeopardizing access to vital services by those who need it most. The health of mothers and babies has become a political consideration rather than a matter of public health. 

The federal government has been much more responsive than what we have experienced at a state level in Kansas and Missouri, quickly prioritizing maternal and infant health. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, adopted on March 18, 2020, extended postpartum coverage for mothers to one year after birth. This is a significant jump from the status quo of 60 days, and is to remain in effect until the end of the pandemic. The American Rescue Plan, adopted in 2021, allows states to extend postpartum coverage for one year.  

Please join us on July 21 as we take a closer look at the drivers of maternal morbidity and identify strategies, including policies that should be implemented to address this problem in a sustaining way.

Tracy Russell
Executive Director, Nurture KC
MAIC hosts more COVID vaccine clinics

The Mid America Immunization Coalition (MAIC) continues to bring COVID vaccine clinics to communities that need them most! Here, the Morales family receives their second dose of the Pfizer vaccine. (Their toddler wanted a matching band-aid and did not receive the vaccine.)

Thanks to Walgreens, El Centro and Iglesia Misionera El Verbo de Dios for partnering with us to make this clinic possible. MAIC will be hosting more COVID vaccine clinics, so keep an eye out on the news and on our social media channels -- Facebook and Twitter.
Legislative wrap-up:
Where Nurture KC stands

It was a busy, unpredictable legislative session in both Kansas and Missouri. Our top priorities failed to garner approval, particularly around Medicaid expansion. There were defensive successes that resulted in maintaining existing vaccination requirements, a big win for disease prevention. On another positive note, Missouri approved mental health parity legislation requiring insurance to provide mental health coverage similar to physical health coverage. From Nurture KC’s perspective, this is a great step forward in recognizing the importance of access to mental health services for the families we serve. 

To read about these issues and see our full legislative wrap-ups for Kansas and Missouri, visit our Members Only page and scroll to the "Legislative Priorities -- Where We Stand Now" section.
Financial help for renters affected by COVID-19

Please help us spread the word -- the Emergency Rental Assistance Program can help families who rent their homes get caught up on past due rent and utility bills. The program is funded by the U.S. Congress as part of the stimulus bill approved in December 2020. United Way is assisting Kansas City area cities and counties in implementing their programs. 

We have a new web page within our Family Portal outlining the program, including such details as:
  • How do I know if I qualify?
  • How much help is available?
  • Where do I apply?
  • What documentation is needed to apply?
  • Can I get help with my application?

See this program overview in English on the "For Healthy Start Families" page or in Spanish on the "Para Familias de Healthy Start" page. We compiled this information for our Healthy Start families, but anyone can access it and benefit from the program.
Did you know Nurture KC has two nurses on staff?

We recently celebrated Nurse Appreciation Week and honored our nurses on social media. We received an overwhelming response from our community. Thank you to all those who chimed in with positive comments. Our nurses felt the love and appreciation!

Raechel Blades, MSN, RNC–OB, helps moms in our Healthy Start program who need more specialized care to overcome barriers. Raechel operates out of Truman Medical Centers. Learn more about Healthy Start at

Katherine Campbell, BSN, is our Fetal Infant Mortality Review (FIMR) Program Coordinator. She leads a case review team to improve health delivery systems and save babies' lives. Learn more about FIMR at
WELCOME ... To new member Caitlin Hornbeck.
THANK YOU ... To Ashley Stumpenhaus and Samantha Collinson for renewing their memberships.
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Donations in any amount will help us continue our work of improving the lives of KC metro area families. For detailed information about our programs, CLICK HERE.
1111 W. 39th Street, Ste 100
Kansas City, MO 64111