Sleeping Baby

Healthy Babies

Healthy Babies addresses the health and well-being of mom and baby during pregnancy and the first few months of life. Through subsidized prenatal medical care, supportive mental health services, transportation to these vital medical appointments, childbirth education, and lactation support services we are able to ensure babies are born healthy to prepared parents.

Prenatal Care:

FKHSC works in partnership with local OB/GYNs who provide ten prenatal and one postpartum visits to Healthy Babies clients. Studies have shown that proper prenatal care is essential to preventing low-birth weight infants and fetal/infant mortality and morbidity. To participate in this program, you must be an active Healthy Start client.


Transportation Services:

FKHSC provides transportation for pregnant women and infants to their necessary prenatal, postpartum, and infant wellness medical appointments.


Mental Health:

FKHSC also works in partnership with four local mental health professionals who provide counseling sessions for parents and families that are experiencing challenges related to PMAD and loss. PMAD stands for Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders, encompassing a wider variety of diagnoses formerly known as postpartum depression.


Virtual Breastfeeding and Childbirth Classes:

Due to COVID-19 related hospital restrictions, FKHSC launched virtual childbirth and breastfeeding classes. These classes are held quarterly.



We are currently working to add labor and postpartum doula support, which has been proven to reduce the cost of prenatal care and birth as well as improving birth outcomes and reducing incidence of PMAD challenges after babies are born.



For more information about Healthy Babies or to get started on becoming a Healthy Start client, contact Jessica Lariz at or 305-676-3841.


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Why Healthy Babies Matters:

The need for these services in the Florida Keys is significant. During our financial year of 2019-2020, we provided 160 subsidized prenatal care appointments and 47 hours of one-on-one counseling sessions with our mental health professional. Over the next three years, this program will grow to include labor and postpartum doula support. We will also be partnering with local agencies and the hospitals to address the OBGYN and Pediatric crisis in our community.

Mental Health Program

This subsidized program works in partnership with highly trained mental health providers to assist uninsured or underinsured pregnant and postpartum families copy with PMADs and loss. 

PMAD stands for Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders, encompassing a wider variety of diagnoses formerly known as postpartum depression.  Florida Keys Healthy Start Coalition is passionate about having resources to address PMADs in the Keys, as it comes to the forefront of maternal and child health in our community.

We have two mental health professionals in our community who contract with the Coalition to provide individual and group counseling services for families in need of support. With one counselor covering the Lower Keys and one in the Upper Keys, no matter where you are in Monroe County we are here for you.

We are excited to announce that we are now offering in-person and virtual English and Spanish mental health support.

  • Tania M. Paredes, Ph. D., Licensed Clinical Social Worker

  • Yaiza Sanchez, Licensed Mental Health Counselor

  • Whitney Leon, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

  • Amy Gertz, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist


If you are feeling stressed, overwhelmed, or feel like talking to someone would be helpful, please contact our office 305-293-8424 or click here to request an initial session.