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Obstet Gynecol. 2018 May;131(5):770-782. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000002475.

Reduction of Peripartum Racial and Ethnic Disparities: A Conceptual Framework and Maternal Safety Consensus Bundle.

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Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, New York; Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, North Carolina; the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, Tampa, Florida; Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine, Portland, Oregon; the Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs, Washington, DC; the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Burns Allen Research Center, Los Angeles, California; Susan Gullo Consulting, Boston, Massachusetts; the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, Minneapolis, Minnesota; the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, Arkansas; Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois; the Central Jersey Family Health Consortium, Tinton Falls, New Jersey; and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Washington, DC.


Racial and ethnic disparities exist in both perinatal outcomes and health care quality. For example, black women are three to four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes and have more than a twofold greater risk of severe maternal morbidity than white women. In an effort to achieve health equity in maternal morbidity and mortality, a multidisciplinary workgroup of the National Partnership for Maternal Safety, within the Council on Patient Safety in Women's Health Care, developed a concept article for the bundle on reduction of peripartum disparities. We aimed to provide health care providers and health systems with insight into racial and ethnic disparities in maternal outcomes, the etiologies that are modifiable within a health care system, and resources that can be used to address these etiologies and achieve the desired end of safe and equitable health care for all childbearing women.

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