The Improving Maternal Health initiative addresses the various and complex drivers of maternal mortality and other adverse outcomes through a comprehensive, long-term strategy. The initiative is funded with support from Houston Endowment, Episcopal Health Foundation, Cullen Trust for Health Care and others, and includes more than 100 area maternal medical leaders and community leaders committed to increasing maternal survival and improving women’s pre- and postpartum wellness by shifting healthcare norms and societal attitudes.
Concerned by local maternal morbidity and mortality trends, Houston Endowment convened a Steering Committee of leaders from a wide range of backgrounds – including healthcare, behavioral health, social services, research, business, government and philanthropy – to learn more about maternal health in Harris County and to develop a community-wide effort to reduce the rate of maternal mortality. The goal of the planning process was to develop a comprehensive, long-term strategy that incorporates clinical, community-based and systems-change strategies; capitalizes on existing initiatives and funding streams; tests innovative methodologies; and embraces advocacy when necessary.
More than 150 experts and community leaders in Harris County generously shared their time, knowledge, expertise and experience through interviews, focus groups, meetings, workshops and other efforts to develop Improving Maternal Health in Harris County: A Community Plan. Through these contributions and commitment, Harris County is on its way to becoming a place where every woman’s pregnancy, delivery and postpartum experience is successful and safe.