Virtual Meeting Q&A: Growing, Sustaining, and Supporting the Birth Doula Workforce

There has been growing interest in recent years about doula care and its role in addressing racial disparities in maternal health. Over half of the states in the US are currently exploring or in the process of implementing Medicaid coverage for doula care. During this virtual meeting our panel of experts answered audience questions about…

Lack of Consistent Investment in Federal Insurance Navigator Program Undermines Navigatorsā€™ Equity Work in Vulnerable Communities

Navigators in the federal Insurance Navigator Program provide enrollment assistance, outreach, and education to individuals who are eligible for health insurance coverage. Their work is key to public health efforts to address inequities but continues to be poorly understood and undervalued. This article examines the navigator profession to better understand the equity work they do,…

Addressing Systemic Racism in Birth Doula Services to Reduce Health Inequities in the United States

Birth doulas, who support pregnant women during the perinatal period, have positive impacts on pregnancy and birth outcomes, particularly among underserved populations. However, health workforce-related barriers challenge the development of robust doula services in the United States. This article examines various approaches to train, recruit, and employ doulas, as well as what system-level changes are…

Financial Instability of Federal Navigator Program Challenges Organizations to Help Uninsured Enroll in Health Insurance Coverage

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Obama Administration created the federal Health Insurance Navigator Program, which seeks to reduce the rate of uninsured in the United States. Under this program, navigators help people procure insurance coverage through federally facilitated Marketplaces (or Exchanges). During COVID-19, financial insecurity and substantial budget cuts created increased shortages and…

ā€œThis Work That Weā€™re Doing Is Bigger Than Ourselvesā€: A Qualitative Study With Community-Based Doulas in the United States

Community-based doulas provide essential services and expertise which address inequities and systemic gaps in perinatal care. However, as they work to improve perinatal health, doulas themselves are providing equity work amidst an inequitable system and with insufficient political or financial support. Increased compensation and systemic support which acknowledges the breadth of services provided are needed…

Inequitable Care Delivery Toward COVID-19 Positive People of Color and People With Disabilities

It is well known that Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) as well as people with disabilities experience discrimination and bias in the health care services they receive. Few studies have examined such inequities in healthcare during the COVID-19 pandemic, where pandemic-related restrictions and policies compounded existing inequitable care for these populations. This article…

Competencies, Training Needs, and Turnover Among Rural Compared With Urban Local Public Health Practitioners: 2021 Public Health Workforce Interests and Needs Survey

The COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the US public health workforce. High turnover of local health department (LHD) personnel has created concerns about workforce needs and capacity. This strain has been particularly alarming among rural LHDs due to an historical lack of investment and limited workforce capacity compared to their urban counterparts. This article comparesĀ rural…

Competencies, Training Needs, and Turnover Among Rural Compared With Urban Local Public Health Practitioners: 2021 Public Health Workforce Interests and Needs Survey

The COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the US public health workforce. High turnover of local health department (LHD) personnel has created concerns about workforce needs and capacity. This strain has been particularly alarming among rural LHDs due to an historical lack of investment and limited workforce capacity compared to their urban counterparts. This article comparesĀ rural…

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