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In-home nurse visits through Family Connects NJ will begin in mid-January in the first five counties of the program: Essex, Middlesex, Mercer, Gloucester and Cumberland.  If you are expecting a newborn -- through birth, adoption or via a resource placement -- or if you and your partner recently experienced the tragedy of stillbirth, you can sign up today to schedule a home visit.

Please contact the nursing provider partner in your county via the methods below to schedule your visit today!

  • ESSEX COUNTY -- Partnership for Maternal and Child Health of Northern New Jersey
  • MIDDLESEX AND MERCER COUNTIES -- Central Jersey Family Health Consortium
  • GLOUCESTER AND CUMBERLAND COUNTIES -- Southern New Jersey Perinatal Cooperative

In July 2021, Governor Murphy signed legislation to create a universal home visiting program in New Jersey, only the second state in the nation to pass such legislation. The program will be known in New Jersey as Family Connects NJ.

Under this new law, New Jersey will provide all new parents with access to Home Visiting services – including those welcoming a newborn into their home and family through adoption, foster home or kinship placement.  Further, New Jersey will be the first child welfare jurisdiction in the nation to make Home Visiting available to families that have suffered the tragedy of a stillbirth.

New Jersey will be using an evidence-based model from Family Connects International to deliver this program.  The goal of this short-term, universal, evidence-based home visiting model is to reduce maternal and infant morbidity and mortality by assessing health needs of parents and infants, assessing behavioral health and social needs of families and connecting families with appropriate community services.

Services will be offered in a culturally competent manner, respecting a family’s language, heritage, and religious practices. Families that participate in the Family Connects NJ universal home visiting program will receive a free session with a registered nurse or advanced practice nurse in the comfort of their home. Nurses will provide maternal and newborn health assessments and screenings to ensure everyone is healthy, provide information on infant care, support for those breastfeeding, and help with getting connected to resources within the community that families may need to adjust to life with a newborn.  

Family Connects NJ is being phased in statewide, and DCF is excited for the transformative potential that this initiative will have to support newborn and family well-being.  More information about this program will be shared soon as the first counties go live in the early part of 2024.

Why Have a Universal Home Visiting Program?

The weeks following a birth are a critical period for an infant, setting the stage for long-term health and well-being. During this period, a family is adapting to multiple social and psychological changes. In some families, people who have given birth are also adjusting to changing hormones and learning to feed and care for a newborn, while simultaneously recovering from childbirth. Data demonstrate the wide-ranging benefits to families when they receive nursing and social support within the weeks following the birth or arrival of a child.

Research also indicates that postpartum education and care lead to lower rates of maternal morbidity and mortality, as many of the risk factors for post-delivery complications, such as hemorrhaging or a pulmonary embolism, may not be identifiable before a woman's discharge after birth.

In addition to medical benefits, nurse visits provide education and supports that can be beneficial for families welcoming a newborn.   Every family is different, and every family’s needs are different, however visits have been found to:

  • Reduce rates of anxiety among new parents
  • Assist families in making the home child-friendly and child-safe
  • Connect families to high quality childcare
  • Improve community connections
  • Provide parent education, where needed
  • Increase father involvement

This effort is part of First Lady Tammy Murphy’s Nurture NJ initiative.  Nurture NJ is a multi-pronged, multi-agency initiative that aims to make New Jersey the safest and most equitable place in the nation to deliver and raise a baby.


Contact Family Connects NJ Universal Home Visiting