Office of Children's Health

High Risk Perinatal Program/Newborn Intensive Care Program (HRPP/NICP)

What is the High Risk Perinatal/Newborn Intensive Care Program?

The High Risk Perinatal Program/Newborn Intensive Care Program (HRPP/ NICP) is a comprehensive, statewide system of services dedicated to reducing maternal and infant mortality (deaths) and morbidity (abnormalities that may impact a child's growth and development). The program provides a safety net for Arizona families, to ensure the most appropriate level of care surrounding birth as well as early identification and support for the child's developmental needs.

Maternal and Neonatal Transport Services

Maternal and Neonatal Transport Services provide medical consultation and case management related to treatment/stabilization and, if needed, maternal and/or neonatal transport to available higher level(s) of care. The toll free number is 1-800-552-5252. This number is used to connect an attending physician with the HRPP on-call perinatologist or neonatologist in the specific geographic area. Infant transport back to the community hospital near the family after the acute hospitalization allows families to visit and learn to care for their baby.

Hospital and Inpatient Physician Services

Hospital and Inpatient Physician Services provide comprehensive, developmentally and risk appropriate care to critically ill infants within a hospital setting that is caring and supportive to the infant and their extended family. The program contracts with hospitals across the state that are certified by the Arizona Perinatal Trust (APT) / Arizona Perinatal Regional System (APRS). Contracted physician groups provide medical care to program infants during the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) hospitalization.

Community Nursing Services

Community Nursing Services facilitates the transition of the child and family from the Newborn Intensive Care Unit to their home and community. Periodic monitoring of the child's medical and developmental needs identifies infants who would benefit from referral to other early intervention programs. Through these home visits, the family receives support and education as well as referral to appropriate community resources.

What does the HRPP Program do?
  • Assure that high risk pregnant women and critically ill newborns receive timely access to appropriate medical care without regard to geographic location or ability to pay
  • Provide interventions which result in the reduction of infant and maternal deaths and improved medical and developmental outcomes
  • Provide support to families who have been impacted by the birth of a critically ill infant
  • Assist families in the development of a secure and nurturing environment which will increase their child's ability to learn and grow
  • Connect families with early intervention services which can increase the child's chances for optimal development and learning
What is the goal of the program?

The goal of the NICP program is to reduce maternal and infant mortality and morbidity utilizing the following strategies:

  • Early identification of women and children at high risk for mortality and morbidity;
  • Education for health professionals, families and communities;
  • Linkage of infants, toddlers and pregnant women to risk appropriate services;
  • Establishment of standards of care.
Arizona Data
  • Infant deaths (within the first year of life) - In 2012, 495 Arizona infants died before reaching their first birthday, 206 fewer than the latest peak of 701 infant deaths in 2007.
  • Postneonatal deaths (from 28 to 365 days of life) have slightly increased from 2.0 per 1,000 live births in 2011 to 1.9 per 1,000 live births in 2012.
  • Based on the actual number of infant deaths and live births in 2012, the infant mortality rate of 5.8/1,000 was the lowest recorded in the past decade.
  • In 2012, 4,158, or 4.9 percent of newborns were admitted to newborn intensive care units (NICUs).
  • In CY2013, 95.3% of all resident births in Arizona occurred in Arizona Perinatal Trust (APT)/ Arizona Perinatal Regional System (APRS) certified hospitals.
  • In CY2013, 92.3% of very low birth weight babies were born at level III and/or level IIEQ APT hospitals.
Program Data
  • FY2013:
    • 3,886 infants were enrolled in NICP
    • Community Health Nurses made 7,539 visits to medically fragile infants and their families after they were discharged.
    • 797 critically ill pregnant women were transported to the appropriate level of care.
    • 769 critically ill newborns were transported to the appropriate level of care.
  • FY2012:
    • 3,817 infants were enrolled in NICP
    • Community Health Nurses made 7,233 visits to medically fragile infants and their families after they were discharged.
    • 780 critically ill pregnant women were transported to the appropriate level of care.
    • 795 critically ill newborns were transported to the appropriate level of care.

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Note: Information provided in PDF files, unless otherwise noted. All data is derived from the Arizona Health Status and Vital Statistics Annual Reports.