This report identifies three reliably high-quality forms of maternal and newborn care, as well as one promising model: midwifery care, community birth settings, doula support, and community-lead perinatal health worker groups. The first three models of care show clear evidence of providing excellent, woman-centered experiences that lead to improved birth outcomes. Although not extensively evaluated yet, community-lead perinatal health worker groups are likely to be highly effective in reducing racial inequities that have plagued communities, as well as offering specific, evidence-based care.

The report also recommends steps that decision-makers – including federal and state policymakers, health care purchasers, and payers – can take now for healthier moms and babies.

Authors: National Partnership for Women & Families

Published: September 2020

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