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J Health Care Poor Underserved. 1998 Feb;9(1):14-29.

Improving prenatal care services for low-income African American women and infants.


Increasing the level of prenatal care among African American women may be one method of improving the health and well-being of African American women and children. This article identifies factors influencing access to and use of prenatal care and strategies for increasing the use of prenatal care among low-income African American women. Barriers to prenatal care, the strengths and limitations of prenatal care in reducing infant mortality and improving infant outcomes, and the importance of providing more comprehensive prenatal care that addresses both the medical and psychosocial needs of the low-income African American mother and her infant are discussed. Changes in prenatal care services that include the medical and lay communities, public health organizations, public policy organizations, and medical financing institutions are identified.

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