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Rural Maternal Health – Resources

Selected recent or important resources focusing on Rural Maternal Health.

Maternal and Infant Health: HHS Should Strengthen Processes for Measuring Program Performance
Provides an overview of the Healthy Start program, which aims to reduce rates of infant death, improve maternal health outcomes, and reduce racial and ethnic disparities. Describes Healthy Start grantees and participants served during the April 2019-March 2024 grant period, as well as services that grantees are expected to provide and changes to these expectations for the 2024-2029 grant period. Explores the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services's (HHS) efforts to measure program performance, the extent to which Healthy Start performance measures meet key attributes of effective measures, and HHS' efforts to align Healthy Start performance measures with those of related HHS programs. Includes information on Healthy Start programs and participants by organization type, race, and rurality. Offers recommendations regarding reviewing and coordinating Healthy Start performance measures across Healthy Start and related programs.
Additional links: Full Report
Date: 03/2024
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Government Accountability Office
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Evidence-Based, Whole-Person Care for Pregnant People Who Have Opioid Use Disorder
Report presents care recommendations for treatment of opioid use disorder during pregnancy. Discusses the risks of opioid use during and after pregnancy and explores factors to consider when treating pregnant people. Highlights barriers for rural patients.
Date: 03/2024
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
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Rural Maternal Health Series: Achieving Birthing-Friendly Status in Rural Hospitals
Webinar recording discusses the quality maternity care improvements rural hospitals must make to earn the Birthing-Friendly designation from CMS. Features presentations from representatives of the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP), the CMS Center for Clinical Standards and Quality (CCSQ), and the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB).
Additional links: Audio Recording, Webinar Slides
Date: 03/2024
Type: Video/Multimedia
Sponsoring organization: Rural Health Information Hub
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Racial/Ethnic Differences in Experiences of Intimate Partner Violence and Postpartum Abuse Screening Among Rural US Residents who Gave Birth 2016-2020
Describes rates of self-reported intimate partner violence among rural residents before or during pregnancy, and the frequency by which different racial or ethnic groups are not screened for abuse after giving birth. Uses 2016-2020 data from the Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS), a population-based surveillance survey. Features statistics with breakdowns by race or ethnicity.
Author(s): Emily C. Sheffield, Alyssa H. Fritz, Katy Backes Kozhimannil
Date: 03/2024
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center
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2023 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report: Chartbook on Patient Safety
Summarizes trends in healthcare quality across 28 measures of patient safety. Presents findings for four settings of care: ambulatory care, home health, hospitals, and nursing homes. Describes disparities in patient safety by race/ethnicity, sex, age, and insurance status. Highlights disparities for maternal morbidity and mortality measures by rurality.
Author(s): Barbara Barton, Darryl Gray, Cecilia Hahn, et al.
Date: 03/2024
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
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Maternal Health in Rural America
White paper describing factors contributing to rural maternal health disparities, including financial barriers to providing obstetric services at rural hospitals, maternal health workforce shortages, access to care, and quality of care. Outlines policy considerations to increase access to maternal health services in rural areas.
Author(s): Hailey Waldman, Alexandra Zimmerman
Date: 02/2024
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: National Rural Health Association
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The Task Force on Maternal Mental Health's Report to Congress
A report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on maternal mental health including barriers to care, federal programs doing relevant work, identifying best practices, and offering suggestions to improve federal infrastructure. Topics discussed include substance use, mortality, social determinants of health, data gathering, community engagement, telehealth, screening, violence, policy, access to care, stigma, and more. Highlights programs across the country addressing maternal mental health issues including some in rural areas. Discusses rural throughout.
Date: 2024
Type: Document
Sponsoring organizations: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
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Rural America's OB Deserts Widen in Fallout From Pandemic
Explores the loss of obstetrics services in rural communities since 2011. Presents data on the number and percentage of rural hospitals that discontinued obstetrics services between 2011 and 2021. Discusses the impact of the loss of these services on maternal and infant health.
Date: 12/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Chartis Center for Rural Health
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Social and Structural Determinants of Maternal Morbidity and Mortality: An Evidence Map
Presents results of a systematic literature review of risk factors associated with maternal morbidity and mortality before, during, and after birth. Reports study findings on social and structural determinants of health including race, income, mental health, rurality, environment, violence, trauma, and more. Observes the state of current research and identifies limitations.
Additional links: Executive Summary, Full Report
Author(s): Jaime Slaughter-Acey, Kathryn Behrens, Amy M. Claussen, et al.
Date: 12/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
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2023 March of Dimes Report Card: The State of Maternal and Infant Health for American Families
Provides information on U.S. and state-level maternal and infant health outcomes. Considers issues such as preterm birth, infant mortality rate, access to health care, policy efforts, social determinants of health, and more. Includes county-level grades of maternal vulnerability.
Date: 11/2023
Type: Document
Sponsoring organization: March of Dimes
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Last Updated: 5/15/2024