High Quality, High Value Maternity Care

By Rachel Walden — February 1, 2010

A special supplement of the journal Women’s Health Issues highlights two new reports published by Childbirth Connection:  “2020 Vision for a High Quality, High Value Maternity Care System” and “Blueprint for Action.”

The reports result from “an extensive multi-year collaboration with more than 100 maternity care leaders representing industry stakeholders – from hospitals and health plans to consumers and providers” with the purpose of “creat[ing] a framework for revamping maternity care in the US and advancing health care reform.”

Freely available online, the 2020 Vision document describes core principles and beliefs about maternity care and goals for care during pregnancy, around the time of birth, and after birth. Examples of values outlined in the document include practicing evidence-based care, supporting physiologic birth, using performance measurement, and supporting shared decision-making and choice.

The Blueprint for Action document, also freely available, provides more specific recommendations for action, including payment reform, reduction of disparities, altering the maternity care workforce composition and distribution, altered approached to liability, focus on resolving clinical controversies, conduct of comparative effectiveness research, better coordination of maternity care, and many others.

Overall, the documents provide an outline for reform of the maternity care system to support evidence, choice, cost-effectiveness, and safety, with recommendations for action and identification of key players for reform at each step, somewhat in the style of the Healthy People model for setting decade-long health system goals. The numerous specific recommendations contained in the documents are a lot to digest, so we appreciate reader responses in the comments.

3 responses to “High Quality, High Value Maternity Care”

  1. Rachel,

    It is a lot to digest but, gratefully, the 2020 Vision and the Blueprint for Action seem to put forth the agenda that women’s health advocates have been striving for, for years: a vision and a plan for ensuring all women receive high-quality maternity care essentially. It is multi-layered, of course, but I dissected what I could here:

    The Cure for An Ailing Maternity Care System


    I’m hoping lots of folks pick up on this, in the context of health care reform discussions! Thanks so much for writing about this also, Rachel.

  2. Kudos from all of us at Childbirth Connection to Judy Norsigian, who did a fantastic job as chair of the stakeholder workgroup for Consumers and their Advocates, and presented the workgroup’s report at the Transforming Maternity Care symposium on April 3, 2009, in Washington, DC!

    The full report from the workgroup for Consumers and their Advocates is posted online at : http://www.childbirthconnection.org/article.asp?ck=10626

    With many thanks to Judy and OBOS for all you do to help achieve a High Quality, High Value maternity care system for all women and their families,

    Rima Jolivet

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