Cincinnati-Area Hospitals to Get ‘Mama Certified’

Feb. 16, 2022
Program designed to provide Black parents-to-be with a meaningful way to assess and compare the maternal-related efforts of Hamilton County, Ohio’s hospital networks

This spring, several Cincinnati-area health systems will take part in the launch of a new program to advance maternal health equity.

Called “Mama Certified,” the program is designed to provide Black parents-to-be with a meaningful way to assess and compare the maternal-related efforts of Hamilton County, Ohio’s hospital networks and to encourage and support the hospitals’ increased efforts to ensure that Black parents-to-be and their babies receive respect and care. 

Signing on to the new certification program are Christ Hospital Network, Mercy Health, TriHealth, UC Health and St. Elizabeth Healthcare. The program was developed in partnership with The Health Collaborative, Queens Village, Cradle Cincinnati and local Black mothers.

Under Mama Certified, health systems will be assessed for their efforts across four categories: infant care, maternal care, staff care and community care. Progress and results will be made publicly available to the community.

Mama Certified was developed in response to significant racial disparities in infant mortality and maternal mortality in the region, as well as the challenges uniquely experienced by Black women in healthcare. Black women report locally that they often feel unseen, unheard, and ignored in medical settings.

“This initiative is needed to shine a light on a major issue in our community: Black maternal and infant mortality,” said Marquisse Watson, president of the Alana Marie Project and Cradle Cincinnati advisory board member, in a statement. “For many Black women, the healthcare setting may be scary or intimidating, because we don’t always feel that our voices are heard. Mama Certified will hold healthcare systems responsible for the care they provide. If hospitals are not providing the care that Black women need and deserve, then we will go to hospitals that do.”

Nationally and locally, Black babies are more than twice as likely to die before their first birthday than White babies, regardless of their parents’ socio-economic status or health behaviors, due to the widespread impact of racism. This impact also extends to maternal mortality, with Black women being three times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related cause than White women.

“The most exciting thing about Mama Certified is the difference it will make in communities that may have felt overlooked,” said Odesa Stapleton, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for Mercy Health, in a statement. “This is a very powerful message to send when it comes to healthcare and ending health disparities.”

“Mama Certified allows women of color in the Cincinnati area to have better ideas of the obstetrical programs that are committed to the offering of outstanding pre-delivery and postpartum care to mothers and babies,” said Michael Thomas, M.D., Professor and Chair, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Cincinnati Medical Center, in a statement.

Sponsored Recommendations

Going Beyond the Smart Room: Empowering Nursing & Clinical Staff with Ambient Technology, Observation, and Documentation

Discover how ambient AI technology is revolutionizing nursing workflows and empowering clinical staff at scale. Learn about how Orlando Health implemented innovative strategies...

Enabling efficiencies in patient care and healthcare operations

Labor shortages. Burnout. Gaps in access to care. The healthcare industry has rising patient, caregiver and stakeholder expectations around customer experiences, increasing the...

Findings on the Healthcare Industry’s Lag to Adopt Technologies to Improve Data Management and Patient Care

Join us for this April 30th webinar to learn about 2024's State of the Market Report: New Challenges in Health Data Management.

Findings on the Healthcare Industry’s Lag to Adopt Technologies to Improve Data Management and Patient Care

2024's State of the Market Report: New Challenges in Health Data Management