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How Can Texas Increase Access To Care, Improve Outcomes For New And Expecting Moms?

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The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted a lot, including prenatal care and birthing plans. Canceled appointments, visitation limits and fears of testing positive for COVID-19 have added extra stress to maternal care. But with a shift towards telemedicine and multiple maternal care bills up for consideration in the ongoing Texas legislative session, better days could be on the horizon for new moms in Texas.

The maternal mortality rate in the U.S. has doubled in the last 30 years, largely due to a lack of access to care. Less than half of women who live in rural areas are able to drive to hospitals that offer obstetrics gynecology.

What are the biggest issues related to maternal health in Texas and who is most affected?

What kind of policies need to be enacted to improve care for new and expecting mothers and their babies?

How do the U.S. and Texas compare to other countries and states in terms of maternal health outcomes?

Guests:

  • State Rep. Shawn Thierry (D-Houston)
  • Dr. Patrick Ramsey, M.D., professor of obstetrics & gynecology and maternal-fetal specialist at UT Health San Antonio; member of Texas Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Task Force
  • Adriana Kohler, policy director for Texans Care For Children
  • Dr. Michele Rountree, Ph.D., associate professor in the Steve Hicks School of Social Work and associate director of the Institute for Urban Policy and Research Analysis at UT Austin, and principal investigator for the Black Mamas Community Collective

"The Source" is a live call-in program airing Mondays through Thursdays from 12-1 p.m. Leave a message before the program at (210) 615-8982. During the live show, call 833-877-8255, email thesource@tpr.org or tweet @TPRSource.

*This interview was recorded on Wednesday, March 17.