A collaboration of the County of Santa Cruz Health Services Agency, First 5 Santa Cruz County, Salud Para La Gente, and Watsonville Community Hospital, the Baby Gateway program not only enrolls eligible newborns into Medi-Cal coverage before they leave the hospital, but also assigns them to a primary care provider, and educates mothers on well-baby care, and what to do if their baby becomes ill.
The goal of Baby Gateway is to reinforce the importance of primary care during the baby's first year of life and beyond and to reduce unnecessary emergency department visits for illnesses best treated in the pediatrician's office. Since 2009, the Baby Gateway program has served almost 1,700 newborns and their mothers at Watsonville Community Hospital. In 2011, the program expanded to include Dominican Hospital and Sutter Maternity & Surgery Center. Special thanks to First 5 Santa Cruz County for funding the program.