Only one Florida hospital makes national rankings for Black maternal health

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It’s Black Maternal Health Week, and a new list released Thursday from U.S. News & World Report ranks hospitals with high black maternal health outcomes. Only one Florida hospital is ranked among 26 across the country.

U.S. News & World Report identified 26 hospitals in 13 states achieving excellent outcomes for c-section and unexpected newborn complications among Black patients.

Only one Florida hospital, Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center, made the list.

Lauren Springfield is the director of community health at Lakeland Regional Heath.  She says programs like their Maternal Focus Care initiative allow mothers to give direct feedback on their care.

“It also really gives the voice to the patient and allows them to advocate for themselves, in a way that we know historically, people that are Black, brown, and other birthing persons may not have felt comfortable doing.”

Dr. Yolanda Lawson is the President of the National Medical Association. She says the country still has a long way to go to ensuring maternal health for all Black women.

“This isn’t a problem that just exists for Medicaid clients, or Medicaid populations, or for poor people. We have seen that even women who are highly educated with college degrees – for Black women, with a college degree, five times the risk of maternal mortality.”

Black Maternal Health Week is held every April as part of National Minority Health Month.

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