Children and Families

Warren County Health Services is a hometown agency that provides services & information for you and your family. Our staff provide education and teaching to families to promote health and well-being for all. We provide a variety of direct service for children and families. We have nurses, a social worker, and a dental hygienist on staff to answer questions and get you connected to the right program!

First Five Program

What IS 1st FIVE?

1st Five is a public-private partnership bridging family practice providers and pediatricians with public health services. The 1st Five Program supports family practice providers and pediatricians in the earlier detection of social-emotional and developmental delays and family risk-related factors in childbirth to 5 and coordinates referrals, interventions, and follow-up.

HOW can 1st FIVE help you?

1st Five can connect a family to a resource in their community. 1st Five helps families by following up with a phone call or a home visit. 1st Five will keep your family practice provider or pediatrician informed on what resources your family has utilized.

We can follow up with a phone call, home visit, and assistance with referrals to services in the community and surrounding communities. We will keep the provider informed of the progress being made with the child and family.

How does it work?
  • Provider recognizes a developmental delay in child age 0-5 or notes family issues that may affect mental well-being of child.
  • Referral is sent to Warren County Health Services to follow up with family.
  • 1st Five coordinator contacts family to discuss issues they are facing and services that would be beneficial.
  • Referrals are made to community services
  • 1st Five coordinator keeps provider updated on progress with services and referrals made
First Five Potential Reasons for Referral
  • Early Intervention & Evaluation Services
  • Developmental Delay
  • Speech Therapy
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Financial Stress
  • Family /Relationship Stress
  • Domestic Abuse
  • Child Care
  • Head Start & Preschool
  • Family Support Services
  • Housing Resources
  • Maternal Caregiver Depression
  • Mental Health Issues
  • Behavior Issues
  • Parent Education Programs
  • Food Assistance
  • Family Planning
  • Medicaid/Dental/ hawk-i Insurance Needs
  • Substance Abuse
  • Transportation Concerns


Is I-Smile in your area?

The I-Smile™ team is IN your county! We are in WIC clinics and other child and maternal health clinics providing oral screenings, fluoride treatments and preventive dental health services. We can answer your dental questions, help you find a dentist and/or dental insurance or arrange transportation. Look for the I-Smile™ team at the following WIC clinics:

What is I-Smile?

Dental hygienists and nurses help children & pregnant women have healthy teeth.

Our Team can teach you/your child:

  • Good brushing and flossing habits
  • Good foods to eat and ones to avoid
  • How to care for baby teeth
  • Fluoride use and decay prevention
  • When your child should have their first visit to the dentist
  • Where to find a dentist
  • How to get your child signed up for
  • Medicaid or hawk-i insurance
  • Answers to all your dental questions!
Warren County

Carlisle: 2nd Monday
Missionary Baptist Church
615 Highway 5, Carlisle

Indianola: 1st and 3rd Mondays and Tuesdays, 4th Tuesday
First United Methodist Church
307 W. Ashland St., Indianola

Norwalk: 4th Monday
New Life Lutheran Church
4380 Wakonda Dr., Norwalk

Madison County

Winterset: 4th Thursday
First United Methodist Church
309 E. Jefferson
Winterset, IA

Healthy Smiles for Healthy Children
  • If your child does not have a regular dentist, or
  • If your child does not have dental insurance and qualities for WIC or Child Health services, or
  • If your child has Medicaid insurance, then we can help your child.

What can my child receive as part of the I-Smile™ program?

  • Regular dental screenings
  • Fluoride treatments to help keep teeth strong
  • Instructions in tooth brushing, flossing and healthy diet
  • Referral and assistance with finding a dentist
I-Smile for Pregnant Women

If you are pregnant and receiving services from WIC or with a Maternal Health clinic, then you too can be a part of the I-Smile™ program!

As a part of the I-Smile™ program you will:

  • Learn to care for your mouth and your baby’s mouth
  • Receive a dental screening and fluoride varnish (if needed)
  • Be referred to a dentist office or assisted with finding a dentist


What is I-Smile™?

I-Smile™ is a group of dental hygienists and nurses that are able to provide oral screenings, education, anticipatory guidance, and preventive services. The I-Smile™ dental home initiative began helping Iowa children and their families in 2006. The primary goal of I-Smile™ has been on improving the dental support system for families with at-risk children who are currently excluded from the dental care system in an attempt to eliminate dental disease.

What is an I-Smile™ Coordinator?

An I-Smile™ Coordinator is a registered dental hygienist that serves as the prevention expert and liaison between the public health agency, families and dental offices to ensure completion of dental care. The I-Smile™ Coordinator’s responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  1. Providing dental screenings and fluoride varnish to children and pregnant women enrolled in WIC and Maternal Health programs
  2. Providing care coordination following screenings to ensure families are aware of their dental needs
  3. Developing partnerships within the communities in the service area to expand the referral network

The I-Smile™ Coordinator is also able to provide education to the general public about the importance of oral health, give presentations about oral health education to parent groups, schools, businesses and faith-based organizations as well as train other health professionals, such as nurses and doctors, to provide dental screenings and fluoride varnish application.

For more information, please visit the I-Smile™ Dental Home Website.

Who can I contact for more information about I-Smile™?

Warren County Health Services: 515-961-1074

What is fluoride?

The effects of fluoride in drinking water have long been studied. In 1945, Grand Rapids, Michigan became the first city to add fluoride into its water system. Eleven years later, in 1956, decay rates among school-aged children dropped more than percent! To this day, fluoride continues to be dentistry’s main weapon in the battle against tooth decay. Nearly every toothpaste on the market contains fluoride as its active ingredient; water fluoridation benefits over 200 million Americans and about 13 million school-aged children participate in school-based dental fluoride programs.
Benefits of Fluoride
Fluoride FAQ

Who qualifies for I-Smile™ services?

Children ages 0-21 and pregnant women

What services does I-Smile™ provide?

The I-Smile™ Coordinator is able to work with your family to provide the following services:

  1. Locate a dentist for your family
  2. Dental Screenings
  3. Fluoride Varnish treatments
  4. Dental Sealants
  5. Oral Hygiene Instruction, Nutritional and Tobacco Cessation education
  6. Help find funding (insurance) and transportation sources
  7. Free dental supplies

How early should dental exams be done?

Your child should have their first dental exam by their first birthday! Help your child by having a dental visit by the time they turn 1! Baby teeth are important and your child needs them to stay healthy to eat, sleep and talk!

What is a certificate of dental screening?

If your child is newly enrolling in kindergartner or 9th grade, they are required to turn in a Certificate of Dental Screening. This certificate is required for only these students and may be signed by a dentist, dental hygienist. If your child will be in kindergarten, the certificate may be signed by a physician, physician’s assistant, nurse practitioner or registered nurse. Exemptions are allowed on an individual basis for religious and financial hardship reasons. A Certificate of Dental Screening Exemption Form is available and must be completed as instructed.
Certificate of Dental Screening FAQ

Maternal Health

Pregnant? The Maternal Health Program is here to support you!

The Maternal Health Program provides pregnancy support & health education to pregnant women in: Madison & Warren County


We will assist with:

  • Pregnancy questions or concerns
  • Finding a doctor or dentist
  • Help finding medical Insurance
  • Transportation to medical appointments
  • Referrals to other resources
  • Social assessment and guidance
  • Oral health services
  • Interpretive services
  • Home visits
  • Immunizations
  • Family planning services

Services provided by these clinics include:

  • Developmental screenings
  • Lead risk assessments & lead testing
  • Childhood immunization clinics
  • Help finding a doctor or dentist
  • Help establishing medical and dental homes
  • Oral health services
  • Interpretive services
  • Referrals to other resources

These services are income based and are provided by:
Nurses, Social Workers & Dental Hygienists

Our caring staff members will assist you in accessing services to improve the health of your pregnancy.


Carlisle: 2nd Monday
Missionary Baptist Church
615 Highway 5, Carlisle

Indianola: 1st and 3rd Mondays and Tuesdays, 4th Tuesday
First United Methodist Church
307 W. Ashland St., Indianola

Norwalk: 4th Monday
New Life Lutheran Church
4380 Wakonda Dr., Norwalk

Winterset: 4th Thursday
First United Methodist Church
309 E. Jefferson
Winterset, IA

Child Care Nurse Consultant

Warren County Health Services – 515-961-1074

Certified nurses can help you with health and safety concerns through:

  • Health Consultation for concerns by phone or in person
  • Guidance to current information on health topics
  • Solutions to difficult problems faced by a child or family
  • Support for health policies and direct service that impact Quality for children
  • Health and safety consultation for child care programs and preschools
  • Referrals to valuable resources
  • Assistance with the Quality Rating System

Lead Poisoning and Prevention Program

What is childhood lead poisoning?
Childhood lead poisoning is a disease that occurs when children have too much lead in their bodies.

How do children become lead-poisoned?
Children become lead-poisoned if they:

  • Put lead-based paint chips in their mouths.
  • Put dusty or dirty hands, toys, bottles, or pacifiers in their mouths.
  • Chew on surfaces painted with lead-based paint.
  • Breathe in dust from lead-based paint that is being sanded, scraped, or removed with a heat gun.
  • Play in dirt or a sandbox near an old building or where an old building was torn down.

How common is lead poisoning?
Lead poisoning affects 1 in 14 Iowa children. This is four times the national average.
Lead poisoning is usually caused by lead-based paint found in homes built before 1960. About 60% of the homes in Iowa, both in urban and rural areas, were built before 1960.

Could your child be lead-poisoned?
Yes — most children with lead poisoning do not look sick.
Lead-poisoned children may:

  • Be easily excited.
  • Have problems paying attention.
  • Complain of stomachaches and headaches.
  • Be more tired than usual.

How can you tell if your child is lead-poisoned?
The only way to tell if your child is lead-poisoned is to have their blood tested. All Iowa children must be tested for lead poisoning before starting kindergarten.
The Iowa Department of Public Health recommends that children be tested for the first time at the age of 12 months.
Ask your health care provider to do a blood lead test whenever your child has a check-up.
This test is required for children who are covered by Medicaid. Many insurance plans also pay for this test.

How often should your child be tested for lead poisoning?
It’s important to get their blood lead level tested at least once a year until they are six years old.
Many children have normal blood lead levels at 6-12 months of age.
However, these same children may become lead-poisoned when they are older and more active.

What will happen if your child is lead-poisoned?
Someone from a local health or housing agency or the Iowa Department of Public Health will visit you.
They will show you where your child is being exposed to lead. They will also explain how to take care of the problem.

How can I protect my child from lead poisoning?
Keep your child away from areas of peeling and chipping paint. Be sure to check the following areas:

  • Window sills.
  • Window troughs (area between the storm window and the inside window sash).
  • Outdoor play areas.

Be sure to check your home and other homes where your child visits.
Wash your child’s hands before meals and snacks. Also wash your child’s toys or pacifier often.
If you plan to do any painting or remodeling in a pre-1960 home, find out how to do the work safely.

Where can I get more information?
For more information about lead poisoning and how you can protect your children, contact one of the following agencies:

Iowa Department of Public Health
(515) 281-3479
or your local city or county health department or housing agency.