We truly appreciate that you have taken the time to learn and understand how to provide the most effective, compassionate healthcare and support for expectant parents who have recently received a suspected or confirmed prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome.
While this can be challenging, we are here to make it as easy as possible. Below, you will find information on our best practices for delivering a prenatal diagnosis, as well as medical provider resources. You will also learn how medical providers can make a referral to the National Prenatal First Call Center.
Thank you for your care and support for our families.
Support for Expectant Parents
If your patient has received prenatal screening or test results that suggest or confirm a diagnosis of Down syndrome, we are here for them – with accurate, up-to-date information and the opportunity to speak confidentially with a parent mentor. Our parent mentors have walked in their shoes, as they also learned about Down syndrome during their pregnancy. They have received training to provide nonjudgmental support to those seeking more information about the joys and challenges of having a child with Down syndrome.
If you have their permission to share their information for this connection and they are interested in connecting with a First Call parent volunteer by phone please complete this short request form.
Helpful Resources to Share with Expectant Parents
Understanding a Down Syndrome Diagnosis – For patients first learning about a prenatal screening/testing and a suspected diagnosis of Down syndrome. The booklet shares information in both English and Spanish.
Down Syndrome Pregnancy – Offers resources about Down syndrome for expectant parents preparing for the birth of a baby with Down syndrome. The booklets are available in both English and Spanish.
Down Syndrome Diagnosis Network Facebook group – Down Syndrome Diagnosis Network offers a vast on-line support platform through Facebook for new and expectant parents and provides accurate information to parents and medical professionals; if your patient is continuing their pregnancy to parent the child they may request to join.
A Promising Future Together: A Guide for New and Expectant Parents – Provides a comprehensive overview of Down syndrome including sections on healthy starts, early intervention therapies, how to find support and care for their family and what the future holds for their child (separate links for English and Spanish)
The National Down Syndrome Adoption Network – We understand that not all expectant families feel they are able to meet the needs of children with Down syndrome. The National Down Syndrome Adoption Network provides information to families who may be seeking alternatives to parenting. The network currently has 200 registered families, each waiting to adopt a baby with Down syndrome.
Helpful Resources for Medical Professionals
Delivering a Prenatal Diagnosis – We encourage you to explore the free online learning modules for medical professionals from the University of Kentucky’s Human Development Institute including how to best deliver a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome.