Bureau of Family Health and Nutrition (BFHN)

BFHN provides programs and services ensuring the health of the Commonwealth’s mothers, infants, children and youth— including children and youth with special health needs and their families.

Contact Us

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Public Health logo


250 Washington St., Boston, MA 02108


Alison Mehlman, Acting Bureau Director Alison.Mehlman@Mass.Gov


(617) 624-6062

Who we serve

We provide resources and support for families with children.

The Bureau includes 4 divisions, the Massachusetts Center for Birth Defects Research and Prevention, and the Office of Data Translation (ODT) to deliver specialized programming based on your needs:

Commitment to racial equity

The impact of structural racism — the public policies, institutional practices, and social norms that together maintain racial hierarchies — is often overlooked or unacknowledged, yet it is pervasive and unmistakably harmful to everyone. The social marginalization and inequities that structural racism cultivates in housing, education, employment, the built and social environments, and health care are felt across generations, most acutely in communities of color. The Bureau of Family Health and Nutrition recognizes that systems of oppression need to be acknowledged and repaired by entities that helped create them. The Bureau is committed to improving the quality of life for all Commonwealth residents while eliminating the marginalization and inequities that threaten the lives of communities of color who are disproportionately affected by conditions leading to poor health outcomes.

Image credits:  couple holding baby (depositphotos.com);  teacher with young student (depositphotos.com);  mother breastfeeding (depositphotos.com);  mother playing with infant (depositphotos.com);  woman performing phone customer support (depositphotos.com)