Equitable From the Beginning

Equitable From the Beginning

By Optum


Introduction: The data on maternal health | Callie and Stacey continue the focus on equity and our health with a look into the state of maternal health care, including reports from the CDC on pregnancy-related deaths.04:21 Roundtable: Redefining maternal care | Dr. Natalie Hernandez of the Morehouse School of Medicine and Ryan Adcock of Cradle Cincinnati talk about public health, the history of maternal care, and what changes they're seeing make a difference.16:47 Cradle Cincinnati | Callie and Ryan dig deeper into the work that Cradle Cincinnati is doing—and how it illustrates the idea that maternal health needs to be considered in the context of a person's identity and broader social context.23:15 Conclusion | To wrap up the episode, Callie and Stacey reflect on what their guests shared. Of particular note is the idea of diverse and inclusive care practices, which we’ll take a closer look at in Episode 3.


Resources mentioned

CDC research: Pregnancy complicationsThe challenge to improve U.S. maternal healthCradle CincinnatiPress release: Optum Awards $1.4 Million in Maternal Health Grants to Five Community Organizations



Dr. Hernandez’s current research and research interests include transdisciplinary approaches to improving women’s health, reproductive health, sexually transmitted infections, health disparities, community-based participatory research, and reproductive social justice. Dr. Hernandez’s research and interests stem from her commitment to health equity and improving health in underserved communities. During her doctoral program, she worked on multiple projects including behavioral and psychosocial health issues related to women’s health, HPV, and sexuality education. Dr. Hernandez was a HRSA maternal and child health leadership trainee and epidemiology trainee. In addition, she is a lead investigator on a study focusing on psychosocial and socio-cultural correlates of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine intentions and uptake among minority college students and her dissertation focused on examining multiple factors that contribute to the meaning and perceived consequences and management of an unintended pregnancy among Latinas. As a result of her work, she has received a number of awards and published a variety of articles in peer-reviewed journals.


Ryan Adcock is the executive director and co-founder of Cradle Cincinnati, a network built with the express purpose of reducing the high infant mortality rate in Hamilton County. In the eight years since its founding, Cradle Cincinnati has raised more than $25 million for its cause and built dozens of partnerships within the community to save lives. His work for Cradle Cincinnati has included community engagement, strategic planning and evaluation, and communications and media strategy. The result to date—among many other positive outcomes—has been a 15% decline in Hamilton County infant deaths.


The views, opinions, and content expressed in this presentation do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or policies of Optum.

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