UAB’s Comprehensive Addiction in Pregnancy Program (CAPP)

This post is in partnership with UAB Women & Infant Services. It is sponsored content.

The UAB Comprehensive Addiction in Pregnancy Program (CAPP) offers a safe place for pregnant and postpartum women suffering from substance use.

Women participating in CAPP can experience recovery through comprehensive peer-supported, multi-disciplinary care. CAPP’s group prenatal care includes obstetric addiction therapy, opioid replacement therapy, sub-specialty pediatric follow-up, care coordination, social services, peer recovery support, and in-home parenting education.

Who Is Eligible?

All prenatal patients at UAB are screened at their initial appointment for history of or current substance use disorders. Information obtained from this screening determines eligibility for the CAPP program, but this screening is only one route of entry.

CAPP serves women in active addiction as well as women in long-term recovery. Services include:

  • substance abuse treatment,
  • medication-assisted treatment (if needed),
  • outpatient substance abuse treatment with a licensed professional counselor,
  • crisis intervention services, and
  • coordination with the court system and DHR (when necessary). 

Women can self-refer to the program or be referred from their obstetrician. Referrals also come from local substance abuse treatment facilities, recovery support programs, the court system, DHR, and family members. Although the CAPP program is part of a research study between the UAB Department of Maternal Fetal Medicine and the UAB Department of Psychiatry, the program strives to meet the needs of all women and their families.

Is CAPP Only for Women in the Birmingham Metro Area?

While the majority reside in the Jefferson County area, the program has served women from all over Alabama. With assistance from community partners and programs such as Kid One Transport and the Alabama Medicaid NET program, the CAPP program can provide services to pregnant women and their families who reside in areas where substance abuse treatment and services are otherwise not available.

The women who participate in CAPP receive all prenatal care at UAB Hospital and deliver there as well.

What Are the Steps from Enrollment to Graduation?

Once eligibility is determined, patients are seen as quickly as possible for their initial prenatal appointment. Women are then grouped together with other moms-to-be based on estimated delivery dates. Each group usually has about eight to ten women. This provides the women with a support system during pregnancy and reminds them that they are not alone.

Group education classes teach women all about pregnancy and postpartum care. This includes safe foods during pregnancy, anesthesia options, tour of the Labor and Delivery unit, lactation services/breastfeeding, and birth control options.

Within the first week or two, CAPP’s case manager works with UAB Beacon Recovery Group to schedule a substance abuse assessment for each patient. The substance abuse assessment determines which, if any, services are needed.

CAPP partners with Aletheia House for in-patient substance abuse treatment along with UAB Beacon for outpatient treatment services. Outpatient services are provided in the clinic each Thursday.

Graduation from CAPP is based off of participation and progress toward goals. 

What Happens After Graduation from CAPP?

After delivery, patients are offered in-home parenting skills education with Impact Family Counseling following the SafeCare Model.  In-home services can last from four to six months if needed. CAPP’s case manager, Kenya Franklin, and peer recovery support specialist, Leslie Moon, follow each patient for up to six months after delivery (and longer if needed).

Each patient transitions to providers for follow-up care (such as primary care physicians, continued mental health services, and continued medication assisted treatment) if needed. The women in the program know they can reach out to CAPP at any point if needed. 

What Has Changed During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

While CAPP hasn’t necessarily seen an increase in patients, they have seen an increase in the needs of patients. 

Isolation is difficult for anyone, but adding pregnancy, substance use disorders, and often limited support systems makes it even more difficult. 

CAPP is working hard to keep women engaged and are in regular communication with each patient. They have been able to provide telemedicine services for both prenatal care and outpatient substance abuse treatment. Impact Family Counseling provides virtual and phone sessions with families to provide education and teaching materials while everyone shelters in place.

Judgement-Free Zone

CAPP strives to be a judgment-free and stigma-free zone for women and their families. They understand how difficult it is to reach out for help, especially during pregnancy. 

CAPP is truly a team that works together to meet the needs of women to promote healthy women, healthy babies, and intact families. To learn more about CAPP, its services, and how to support, please visit their website.