Issue 15| August 2022

Study News & Updates
EMBRACE aims to contribute substantial evidence to the link between models of enhanced prenatal care, preterm birth rates, maternal mental health outcomes, and experiences of care.
Participant Recruitment
Recruitment Update

Prior to pausing recruitment in March 2020, we had 101 participants enrolled in EMBRACE.

Recruitment was paused between March and October 2020. The recruitment team is now recruiting through a combination of in-person and virtual recruitment methods. 

We currently have 412 participants enrolled in EMBRACE!

Participant Demographics

As we know, preterm birth disproportionately affects women of color, with Black women facing the largest burden. In order to ensure adequate participant representation, the EMBRACE team is prioritizing

the recruitment of Black women. We have a goal to have at least 10% of our participant population identify as Black; currently, 6.5% of participants identify only as African American or Black, and 8.9% identify as Black when including multi-racial participants. Our engagement, outreach, and provider recruitment efforts are focused on increasing the enrollment of Black women.

Participant retention in research studies is important and our recruiters work hard to connect with participants to ensure we have high rates of retention. Our retention rate for participants who joined prior to COVID (and continued to take surveys through 2020) is 86%. Overall study retention is 88%, this is a great number of research and above our goal of 85%. 

Provider Recruitment
Provider recruitment is ongoing; we are actively in conversations to onboard and begin recruitment with additional providers. We continue in our efforts to recruit providers who see the largest share of African American and Black patients.
Staffing changes and patient volume changes continue to affect provider practices that express interest in participating. We are actively working to enable as many providers as possible to onboard so that all women in Fresno have access to participating in EMBRACE.

We are incredibly thankful for the following clinical partners who are currently participating:

´╗┐Clinica Sierra Vista Elm Clinic

Helen Price, NP


Family HealthCare Network Fresno ACC

Gladys Muir, CNM, NP


Staff members at both of these sites have gone above and beyond to adapt to offering Glow! and to accommodate the EMBRACE recruitment staff; we could not have reached 345 participants without their ongoing support and truly appreciate their efforts.

Community Engagement

Study Advisory Group

We are so thankful to our SAG members who continue to show up and share their guidance, insights, and resources with our study team.

Our 2022 SAG meeting schedule

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Thursday, December 15, 2022

General Information

Our team has grown!

We have welcomed two part-time Recruitment and Retention Specialists, Yesica and Kesia!

Yesica Ramirez is a Glow! alumna from Phase I and  a member of the EMBRACE Study Advisory Group. She has lived in the Central Valley her entire life and witnessed the different racial disadvantages that women of color often face. She is excited about joining the EMBRACE team and to focus on helping women feel comfortable and safe throughout their time in the study. 


Kesia Garibay, MSPH, is in her fourth year in the Public Health Ph.D. program at the University of California, Merced. She is excited to be on this team to increase racial equality in the Central Valley. She believes all women deserve access to quality care.

Dr. Gail Newel, Fresno's long-time maternal health advocate and group prenatal care pioneer is ending her work on EMBRACE to focus on her other roles. We are so grateful for Gail's contributions to the area which extends well beyond her work with the Preterm Birth Initiative, Glow! and EMBRACE. If you've worked with Gail and would like to sign her card, click here

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