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New York maternal mortality review board aimed at clinical, social change

Creating a state maternal mortality review board is part of a broader strategy to address health in New York.

The state’s executive budget calls for enacting legislation to create the board.

New York currently ranks 30th in the country when it comes to maternal mortality rate.

“The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has determined that a regular process for professional, multidisciplinary, confidential review of all maternal deaths can help identify the causes of maternal mortality, and those findings can lead to clinical and social change that can help prevent maternal mortality,” the budget statement said. “The same is true for severe maternal morbidity.”

Black women in New York are two to three times more likely than white women to die in childbirth. With a focus on addressing that disparity, the review board should be composed of at least 15 members including health care professionals and experts representative of the racial and ethnic diversity of women in New York, according to the budget statement.

The board would “conduct a comprehensive and confidential review of maternal deaths in the state and determine new strategies for the prevention of future deaths—a critical step toward understanding the complex issues impacting maternal health and racial disparities,” the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) said in a statement.

The budget proposal also suggests establishing partnerships with academic and research institutions as well as healthcare providers to build a new data warehouse.

The ACOG said it will work with the state Health Department to convene a work group focused on postpartum care.

“We look forward to the work group discussing how policies in New York can support postpartum care as an ongoing process, rather than a single encounter, to help women understand and navigate their immediate postpartum health needs and foster long-term health and well-being,” the ACOG said.

New York maternal mortality review board aimed at clinical, social change” originally appeared in Crain’s New York Business.