MAY 2022

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Shining a Light on Maternal Mental Health


The just-launched national Maternal Mental Health Hotline will provide women, birthing people, and the people who support them with access to mental health care to improve maternal health outcomes.

This new hotline is part of many efforts to address maternal mental health. There are new policiesnew opportunities, and people in seven states now have access to programs for screening and treatment for maternal depression and related behavioral disorders.

May is Maternal Mental Health Month. Postpartum Support International has a list of open-access mental wellness resources for pregnant and new parents, including a policy strategic plan from Mind The Gap

Read the News Release

National Maternal Health Innovation Symposium

Join us in Chicago or Virtually

August 2-3, 2022

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The Maternal Health and Learning Innovation Center (MHLIC) is proud to host the 3rd annual National Maternal Health Innovation Symposium on August 2-3, 2022. This will be a free event with in-person and virtual attendance options.

Our focus this year is advancing equity through engagement, innovation, and policy.

Pre-registration is now open.

Visit the Event Page

MHLIC Updates

New Blog

Make It Make Sense: Creating a Common Language and Framework for Engaging "Community"

Can you think of top keywords you hear often in your meetings? Odds are, the word 'community' would be high on the list. Our latest blog asks readers to think about what community means to them and helps us start to unpack the importance of creating shared meaning and understanding about the words we use often.

Read & Participate
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Webinar Replay

Reproductive Wellness for Women with Chronic Conditions

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In case you missed it, this webinar shares the findings and recommendations that emerged from a year of listening to the ideas and perspectives of women of color with chronic conditions around reproductive health and care. The webinar is presented by a team of NC-based researchers and people with lived experience and includes strategies for change. It also models the use of graphic note-taking in research. A replay is available on our YouTube channel.

Watch the Replay
Upcoming Events

Maternal Health Innovation Podcast, Season 2 Coming Soon

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We are excited to announce that Season 2 of our Maternal Health Innovation Podcast series is underway! 

This round, we are shifting our focus to public health, policy, and systems changes in maternal health. We are looking forward to uplifting the voices of maternal health movers and shakers. 

Look out for a special announcement when Episode 1 debuts! In the meantime, listen to Season 1 which can be found in our Resource Center or anywhere that you listen to podcasts.

Listen to Season 1

MHLIC Published

Centering Equity and Developing the Maternal Health Workforce

Workforce development that builds the awareness and capacity to advance racial and geographic equity is key to the success of future maternal health efforts.  This article highlights some strategies and approaches to making this happen. Read the Article

Addressing The Maternal Mortality Crisis Through Innovation And Collaboration For Equity, Carolina Public Health 

Raising awareness of the unacceptable, alarming maternal mortality rates in the U.S., members of the MHLIC team call out systemic racism in health care and the urgent need for action. This article was published in the Gillings School of Public Health Magazine. Read the Article 

New Reports and Resources

Centering the Experiences of Black Mamas in the Workplace

This report details the experiences of Black mothers in the workplace. Black Mamas Matter Alliance hosted listening sessions across multiple states. The sessions revealed that "Black pregnant and postpartum workers are faced with the impossible choice between maintaining their health or supporting themselves and their families."  Read the Report

Research Insights

We are not Asking Permission to Save Our Own Lives: Black-Led Birth Centers to Address Health Inequities

This article reviews the improvements in maternal and child health outcomes globally and addresses the stunted progress in the United States. "Birth Detroit demonstrates the operationalization of a Black feminist standpoint, lifts up the power of communities to lead in their own care, and offers a blueprint for action to improve inequities and maternal-infant health in Black communities." Read the Article

Does Medicaid Expansion Impact Postpartum Coverage, Outpatient Care, and Racial Disparities?

Researchers recently found that Medicaid expansion can increase postpartum coverage and outpatient postpartum care visits among low-income individuals, while also narrowing racial and ethnic disparities in coverage. Policymakers have focused efforts on expanding health care coverage during the period when there is a gap in health insurance through Medicaid expansion, extending coverage through one year postpartum. Read the One-Pager

The Effects of Breastfeeding on Maternal Mental Health

Overall, breastfeeding is associated with improved maternal mental health outcomes. However, when people experience challenges or discordance between breastfeeding expectations and actual experience, breastfeeding is associated with negative mental health outcomes. Breastfeeding recommendations should be individualized to take this into account. Read the Article

One in Four New Mothers Who are Physicians Report Experiencing Postpartum Depression

This report details the new survey presented at the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) 2022 Annual Meeting. This is a rate twice that of the general population, according to new survey findings presented.  Read the Report

Upcoming Events

AMCHP 2022 Annual Conference

May 24-26, 2022


Gain a firsthand opportunity to learn about changes occurring in the MCH field, such as federal and state policies and health systems transformation. Session topics will include ensuring equity in systems and services, building and strengthening partnerships, and practicing effective family and youth engagement. Participate in discussions and exchange best practices and resources with other MCH professionals, creating stronger and bolder ideas for the future.

Learn More & RSVP

21-Day Racial Equity Challenge

June 6-27, 2022


Beginning Monday, June 6, you're invited to act daily to deepen your understanding of power, privilege, oppression, and racial equity. Being committed to anti-racism work is about deep self-reflection, learning new things, and building new habits. The Challenge will provide participants with a daily, curated set of readings/podcasts/videos to deepen their understanding of racism and white supremacy.

Join the Challenge

Every Mother Counts Celebrating Juneteenth

Through June 19, 2022

In support of birth justice and in celebration of Juneteenth, Every Mother Counts, a nonprofit working to ensure women and birting people have access to quality, respectful, and equitable maternity care, is matching donations it receives before midnight Friday, June 19. Donations will exclusively support their U.S. grantee partners, all of whom focus on tackling racial disparities and achieving birth justice.

Show Your Support

Black Breastfeeding & Birth Justice Summit

August 25-27, 2022

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Reaching Our Sisters Everywhere (ROSE) and Reaching Our Brothers Everywhere (ROBE) are ecstatic to announce their Annual Breastfeeding and Equity Summit is returning to in-person for 2022! The Summit will be held in New Orleans from August 25 - 27, 2022. Presentations will center on equity in breastfeeding, maternal health, fathers and partners, and infant health initiatives. Continuing education credits available.

Learn More & RSVP
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This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant number U7CMC33636-01 for the National Maternal Health Learning and Innovation Center Cooperative Agreement. This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the official position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government.


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