The Heart of Touch Web Series: Episode 4

Episode 4: Midwifery Solutions for Health Disparities

with Shafia Monroe, DEM, MPH

It was an incredible pleasure to interview Shafia Monroe for The Heart of Touch Web Series. In honor of Black Maternal Health Week (#BMHW18), we offer part one of her interview.  Currenlty, national attention is focused on the shocking maternal outcomes facing women of color in the United States. As maternity care providers, we must ask why black women are 243% more likely to die in childbirth than white women; and black infants die at a rate twice as high as white infants? These deaths are largely preventable. Shafia explains that such problems can not be fixed in the 40 weeks of pregnancy; because they are a result of systemic issues in the way healthcare is delivered.  Increasing access to midwifery is one solution with the potential to improve outcomes. Additionally, skin-to-skin care has been demonstrated to promote health of newborns and should be the standard of care for all babies. However, it is too often denied in facilities that care for predominately black communities.