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Pregnant patient communicates with the doctor using a tablet.

Best practice guide

Telehealth for maternal health services
For providers Best practice guides

Introduction to telehealth for maternal health services

Maternal health care is critical for the long-term health and success of parents and children. Health equity in maternal care has long been a struggle, especially for those in rural and underserved communities. Telehealth is one way to bridge those gaps.

This guide will highlight the needs and procedures for a successful maternal telehealth program.

The United States offers some of the most advanced medical technologies in the world. But our maternal morbidity rate still lags far behind other high-income countries.

The current maternal mortality rate is 17.4 deaths per 100,000 live births, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And Black mothers are 2.5 times more likely to die from pregnancy or childbirth causes than white women. Overall, more than 65 percent of pregnancy-related deaths are preventable.

Additionally, pregnant patients are at higher risk of maternal mortality from COVID-19 infection during pregnancy. Complications associated with a COVID-19 infection during pregnancy include: more severe forms of COVID-19, pre-term birth, and transmission of COVID-19 to newborns.

Types of Maternal telehealth

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