The United Health Foundation is helping expand access to health care and improve health outcomes for mothers and babies in Georgia and North Carolina. The foundation has donated $1,250,000 to East Carolina University’s Brody School of Medicine and $750,000 to the Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia.
North Carolina and Georgia are experiencing increased rates of COVID-19 infections and have historically high rates of maternal and infant mortality. These grants are part of UnitedHealth Group’s more than $100 million commitment to fight COVID-19, support impacted communities and address emerging health care issues related to the pandemic.
The funding to East Carolina University’s Brody School of Medicine will expand telepsychiatry services to better address the mental health needs of expectant and new mothers, develop and deploy a new obstetric care model for high-risk patients, and address food insecurity among pregnant women.
North Carolina ranked 30th in the rate of maternal mortality compared to all U.S. states, with the rate of maternal mortality 2.9 times higher for Black women than white women in the state, according to America’s Health Rankings 2019 Health of Women and Children Report. North Carolina also ranked 41st in infant mortality in the same report.
The funding to Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies Coalition of Georgia will support increased access to services, including virtual perinatal case management, regional maternal mental health support groups and distribution of postpartum supply kits.
Georgia ranked 49th in the rate of maternal mortality compared to all U.S. states, with the rate of maternal mortality 1.6 times higher for Black women than white women in the state, according to America’s Health Rankings 2019 Health of Women and Children Report. Georgia also ranked 45th in infant mortality in the same report.
UnitedHealth Group is committed to improving the health of mothers and newborns, raising awareness for improved maternal health, and reducing the occurrence of avoidable maternal and infant morbidity and mortality. UnitedHealthcare’s Healthy Pregnancy and Maternity Support programs provide resources and services to help expectant mothers get the most out of their benefits, make informed decisions, and promote dialogue with care providers. The company is also actively addressing disparities in maternal health outcomes education in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Morehouse School of Medicine and the March of Dimes.