By many measures, the maternity care system in the United States is not meeting people’s needs during pregnancy and childbirth. Substantial evidence supports the midwifery model of care as a key strategy to improve outcomes, the experience of care, and at the same time, use resources more effectively. Yet, midwives remain an underutilized resource. This session will explore strategies for advocating for increased access to the midwifery model of care in the U.S.
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Nan Strauss is the Director of Policy and Advocacy for Every Mother Counts, where she leads the organization’s efforts to advance policies that expand access to evidence-based, respectful care practices for all members of the community. Previously, she served as the Director of Research and Policy at Choices in Childbirth, where her work included research and advocacy examining midwifery and doula care as high value models that align with the “Triple Aim” for healthcare improvement.
Nan’s work on maternal health began at Amnesty International USA, where she co-authored the groundbreaking report, Deadly Delivery: The Maternal Health Care Crisis in the USA in 2010. As that organization’s Director of Maternal Health Research and Policy, her work framed maternal and reproductive health in the context of the right to health, and included campaigning, policy, advocacy, and media efforts regarding maternal health. She has briefed members of Congress on the U.S. maternal health crisis and worked to develop and strengthen federal and state legislation. Prior to joining Amnesty, Nan served as a staff attorney at the Center for Reproductive Rights. While there, she litigated cases in federal court, including challenging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s refusal to make emergency contraception available over the counter to women of all ages.
Every Mother Counts
Every Mother Counts is a non-profit dedicated to making pregnancy and childbirth safe for every mother, everywhere. The organization educates the public about maternal health and engages thought leaders and partners to achieve quality, respectful, and equitable maternity care. Since 2012, Every Mother Counts has provided over $5 million in grants focused on improving access to essential maternity care. Every Mother Counts currently supports grantees in seven countries: Bangladesh, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Tanzania, Uganda, and the United States. For more information, visit www.everymothercounts.org.