EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Dr. Tosin Ojugbele, a medical director for the Rhode Island Department of Health, joined 12 News at 4 Friday to discuss an increase in drug-exposed newborns statewide.
Ojugbele explained that, over the past five years, the state has seen a 5% increase in newborns affected by prenatal exposure to substances, such as prescribed medications, alcohol, illicit drugs and tobacco.
Rhode Island has several programs to support those struggling with substance abuse disorder, especially for expecting mothers.
The “Helping Mothers and Baby” program through the Parent Support Network of Rhode Island offers mothers-to-be peer support and connects them to resources within the community.
The Health Department also offers “Family Visiting” for expectant mothers to “mitigate or prevent poor health and developmental outcomes.”
Watch the full interview in the video above.