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    OB Hospital Closures

    Of the many contributing factors to maternal mortality rates, the lack of easy access to maternity services and obstetric care is a major one. Mothers of color and those in rural areas are particularly impacted. More worrisome is the trend of several smaller hospitals around the country closing their obstetric services and forcing patients to drive, in some instances, over an hour for their prenatal care and for their delivery.

    To help illustrate the impact these closures have on their patients, Contemporary OB/GYN will post links to these reports on our Hospitals Closures page, and we will include details about the source of the reports and the dates of publication.

    Be sure to check back often for the very latest links and information.

    UMN study reveals maternity care risks in rural America

    Minnesota Daily 3/25/2018

    Declining access to maternity care in rural areas has led to worse health outcomes for babies nationwide, according to a new study from the University of Minnesota.


    News 13 Investigates: Maternity ward shutdown (North Carolina)

    ABC 13 WLOS 11/13/2017

    Four hospitals in Western North Carolina have closed their labor and delivery units over the past two years. More services could be cut in the future. 


    Why delivering babies is draining Maine's small hospitals

    Bangor Daily News 11/13/2017

    In less than a decade, at least three small Maine community hospitals have closed their obstetric departments, citing financial pressures and insufficient demand.


    Rural America's disappearing maternity care

    The Washington Post 11/8/2017

    "Life in rural America can be tough, with challenges starting right from birth. Increasingly, rural women lack access to maternity services, jeopardizing their health and that of their newborns at a time when U.S. maternal mortality is rising."


    Closure of two D.C. maternity wards hurts low-income women most

    Washington Post 10/28/2017

    The ripple-effects stemming from the closure of two D.C. hospitals which primarily served the city’s poorest mothers are raising questions about how these mothers will get the prenatal care they need as well as how the surviving hospitals will cope with the influx of so many new patients.


    Rural maternity wards are closing, and women's lives are on the line

    Carolina Public Press & HuffPost 9/25/2017

    “It is logistically challenging and expensive to staff a unit that must be ready for women day and night, and it is difficult to make enough money when there simply aren’t enough women coming in. Nationally, more than half of births are funded by Medicaid, which pays doctors back at a much lower rate than private health insurance plans. In rural areas, that percentage tends to be even higher. Malpractice insurance also plays a role…All of which means that delivering babies is a money loser for small hospitals already struggling to stay afloat.”


    Another thing disappearing from rural America: Maternal care

    ProPublica 9/5/2017

    A new study shows that more than half of the country’s rural counties now don’t have hospitals with obstetric services. And women of color are being hit the hardest


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