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Maricopa County starts program to help pregnant women struggling with addiction

Maricopa County is teaming up with dozens of organizations to help pregnant women who need addiction treatment.
Published: May. 31, 2022 at 8:05 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - Maricopa County is partnering with dozens of Valley organizations to help pregnant women and mothers battling substance abuse. The initiative called Maricopa Safe Healthy Infants and Families Thrive (SHIFT) launched six months, and the county hopes it helps break the stigma around pregnant women getting treatment.

“This is my first baby so they just taught me lots of things with caring for him and helping me stay sober,” said Janessa Mceryea.

Mceryea just gave birth to her son six weeks ago. He now serves as motivation for her to stay sober and is the reason she got help in the first place. She was battling an opioid addiction when she learned she was pregnant. That is when she reached out to Hushabye Nursery in Phoenix.

“I was scared, I wasn’t ready to be sober but it definitely made it a lot easier,” said Mceryea.

Hushabye Nursery is a nonprofit that helps pregnant women and new mothers get sober while also treating babies exposed to opioids. It is one of more than 30 groups working with the county to provide resources to moms struggling with addiction. SHIFT aims to offer a wide variety of services and support free of judgment or shame.

“We know as medical professionals that piling on more stigma and shame does not help. In fact, it is better outcomes and best practices to approach them with supportive care,” said Clay Jones, coordinator for SHIFT.

For more on resources and services offered through the program, click/tap here.