Earlier this month, Choices in Childbirth and Childbirth Connection, a program of the National Partnership of Women and Families, released a report and advocacy toolkit called Overdue: Medicaid and Private Insurance Coverage of Doula Care to Strengthen Maternal and Infant Health.
Since Choices in Childbirth released its previous report on doula care and the Affordable Care Act, not much about maternal health or coverage of doula care has changed. Between 2014 and 2015, the United States dropped from 31st to 33rd in Save the Children’s annual Mothers’ Index, which “assesses the wellbeing of mothers and children in 179 countries.”
Despite spending more on pregnancy-related care than any other nation, the U.S. health-care system continues to fail mothers and babies, especially those of African descent. Black women are three times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than white women (42.8 versus 12.5 per 100,000 live births).