Report Shows Steep Decline in MA Maternal Health
Friday, July 14, 2023
Racial and gender inequities in Massachusetts have contributed to a steep decline in maternal health, according to a new report.
The Department of Public Health found that the number of mothers experiencing complications from pregnancy or delivery nearly doubled from 2011 to 2020 with severe morbidity rates for Black, non-Hispanic women now more than two-and-a-half times their white counterparts.
Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Robert Goldstein called the data "tragic."
"It is racism and not race that is driving a lot of the inequities that we are seeing in the data," she said, "and the solutions that we are proposing are really leaning in on that message."
Goldstein said his department is working with MassHealth and providers to help better train clinicians to consider how racism may impact their interactions with patients, as well as expand medical-school curriculum to include training on unconscious biases.
Massachusetts established a Maternal Health Task Force last year to help address some of the most critical gaps in direct maternal care, especially for low-income families. Goldstein said the goal is to create a statewide strategic plan to improve care in all communities.
"And we're thinking of ways that, through legislative funding, we can expand things like remote blood-pressure monitoring and the way that we implement levels of maternal care in various hospitals," she said.
Goldstein said it's critical the state be transparent with data exposing the racial and structural barriers preventing people from receiving the care they need, and most importantly to grow the public's trust in the health-care system.
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
The Alabama House and Senate both passed bills this week that would help people resume in vitro fertilization and provide legal protections for provid…
It's early in the season for wildfires in Nebraska, but dozens of firefighters have already been battling a large wildfire near North Platte for …
A new report finds some Missouri laws and prospective laws are perceived as discriminatory regardless of their actual intent - and it outlines some bi…
By Frank Jossi for Energy News Network.Broadcast version by Mike Moen for Minnesota News Connection reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Pub…
By Claire Carlson, John Upton and Kaitlyn Trudeau for The Daily Yonder.Broadcast version by Mark Richardson for Oregon News Service for the Public …
A new Network for Public Education report grades Florida an "F" for its public school funding. As Florida lawmakers negotiate the state budget in …
As members of Congress and presidential candidates battle it out over immigration, a group of Nevada leaders and experts dedicated to advancing …
A bill in Olympia would open access to unemployment while workers are on strike, but time is running out for lawmakers to pass the legislation…