“Louisiana a place in America which is the most dangerous places to give birth,” said Rebekah Gee, MD, at the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) Annual Meeting in Nashville, Tennessee. “We are the sickest and one of the three poorest, states in this country,” Gee told, an obstetrician–gynecologist. “In United States, four black women die for every white woman. This plays out in the data we see here in Louisiana,” Gee reported.
But when her department examine the difference in maternal deaths deemed; to be preventable in white and black women, there was difference of 9% vs 59%. “That is something that should shock us all,” she said. The Louisiana health department has an 18-month plan to reduce maternal morbidity; by 20% and to narrow the disparity in outcomes between black and white mothers; that plagues both the state and the nation.
The plan involves engaging perinatal leadership in health systems at local and state levels; and ensuring that each woman is delivering at a facility that can manage her risk factors; but a cultural shift is need, said Gee. She pointed a great difference in the treatment of hemorrhage. “It shouldn’t matter what color is your skin, how much you weigh, or whether you have high blood pressure.” None of that should have “any impact on how long it takes you to get a blood product.”
Maternal mortality “is one of the most important vital signs of a strong health system, economy, and society,” she told. With Merck for Mothers programs in more than 45 countries; lessons have been learn on ways to improve the “quality of maternity services, from understanding and acting on critical patient feedback to embracing a culture of respectful care for all,” she explain.
Merck for Mothers is working with partners across the United States to design, test, and scale solutions, such as evidence-base practices or safety bundles; to improve obstetric care in the five states that account for about one-quarter of all births in the country.
They also launch the Safer Childbirth Cities program; design to ensure that women have support in all areas of their lives. Grants provide to cities with poor maternal health outcomes can be use; to improve overall maternal health and narrow health disparities by providing transportation to prenatal care, doula support, group prenatal care, and community health workers, Etiebet said.
Maternal Mortality Is The Central Focus
The high rates of maternal mortality in the United States must be address, said Hollier, who made the issue a central focus of her term in office. All of presidential initiatives have been different parts of our strategy to eliminate preventable maternal mortality,” Hollier told. “For me, the president’s program really is another opportunity to talk about solutions and to raise awareness of what is currently being done so that we can continue to move the conversation forward with action.”
State-level work on the issue means that each state can prioritize interventions to meet the needs of the women who live there, because causes of maternal mortality and resources vary by region. The committees will “provide us with the data we need to understand causes and contributing factors so we can develop the right solutions,” she explain.
Another area of success is the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM); a program for which ACOG is a lead partner. AIM works to implement approaches that have been proven to prevent maternal death. It offers tools, training, data, partnerships, and individualized implementation planning; to healthcare system and state initiatives with national ones.