All jurisdictions in Maryland have Local Health Improvement Coalitions to address pressing health issues. In 2021, the five Mid-Shore counties banded together to share knowledge and leverage scarce resources.
The coalition’s initial task is to address the prevention and management of prediabetes and diabetes, and members are working together to create the first diabetes action plan for the Mid-Shore. For more information, visit www.midshorehealth.org.
The Mid Shore Opioid Misuse Prevention Program (OMPP) works to prevent and reduce harm caused by opioid misuse. The strategies include:
- offering safe storage and disposal information for prescription and over-the-counter medicines
- promoting medication drop boxes
- Academic Detailing (educational sessions for healthcare providers to improve how medications are prescribed)
In our region, the Dorchester County Health Department works with the Talbot, Caroline, Queen Anne’s and Kent county health departments on this initiative.
For local opportunities to support the initiative, email Angela Grove.
The council develops, submits to the governor, and implements plans and strategies with which to evaluate, prevent, and treat alcohol and drug abuse in Dorchester County.
For historic plans and surveys, go to:
The team seeks to develop an understanding of the causes and incidence of child death in Dorchester County.
The team develops plans for and recommends changes within the agencies represented on the team to prevent child deaths; and promotes compassion and coordination among agencies involved in investigations of child deaths, or in providing services to surviving family members.
The team also advises the State Child Fatality Review Team on changes to law, policy, or practice to prevent child deaths.
The goal of the Fetal and Infant Mortality Review (FIMR) Program is to prevent infant mortality and morbidity through the review of fetal and infant deaths in Maryland.
The FIMR process is used as a ‘warning system’ and method for improving birth outcomes and systems of care surrounding pregnancy, childbirth and infancy.
FIMR assesses how infant morbidity and mortality occurs in local communities and creates an action-oriented process for change. FIMR offers communities a way to discover unmet needs to improve the health of mothers and infants. FIMR is a process that continually assesses, monitors, and works to improve service systems and community resources for women, infants, and families. A fetal or infant death to a community resident is the event that begins the process.
Key Steps in the FIMR process
- Information about the infant death is gathered. Sources include public health (vital statistics) and medical records. An interview with the mother who has suffered the loss is conducted, if the mother agrees. Professionals with training in grief counseling assess the needs of the family and refer to bereavement support and community resources.
- The Case Review Team composed of health, social service and other experts from the community review this summary of case information and the maternal interview, identify issues and make recommendations for community change, if appropriate.
- The Community Action Team, a diverse group of community leaders, review Case Review Team recommendations, prioritize identified issues, then design and implement interventions to improve service systems and resources.
Confidentiality of all information is strictly maintained. That means that names of the mother, provider and institution are removed.
The Maryland Department of Health’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau is the lead agency for Maryland’s FIMR Program. For information about the Maryland Fetal and Infant Mortality Review Program, please email Sara Lewis or call 410-767-5824.
State health department staff provide training, technical assistance, and support to the local overdose fatality review teams. In addition, the staff prepares an annual report that highlights and summarizes case data and recommendations that were made by the local teams.
The local teams conduct confidential reviews of fatal and non-fatal overdose incidents to identify system gaps and prevention and intervention strategies needed to prevent future overdose deaths.
Members of these multidisciplinary teams are stakeholders representing organizations across multiple sectors including but not limited to: social services, education, criminal justice, mental and behavioral health and others.
Overdose Fatality Review Program goals:
- Identify missed opportunities for prevention and intervention and system level change to prevent future overdose deaths.
- Increase inter-agency communication and collaboration on overdose issues.
- Make recommendations to laws, policies, and/or programs to prevent future deaths.
- Identify overdose risk factors to improve prevention planning.