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September 7, 2023

Social Determinants of Health Sway Care Access, Maternal Morbidity

There has been a lot of data circulating in recent months about the alarming and disproportionate rates of maternal mortality among Black women in comparison to White women, "37.1 deaths per 100,000 births compared to 14.7 deaths per 100,000 births, respectively".  Severe cases of maternal morbidity were found to be concentrated in "neighborhoods that were both low-income and densely populated by women of color". We continue to see the patterns and research behind why those living in lower-income and underserved communities receive or have less access to high quality care, so it is fair for you to be asking yourself why it hasn't been solved for yet. There are underlying, systemic issues engrained into why ones environment plays such a huge role in their health. "Structural racism is the manifestation of historical and current oppression that shapes neighborhoods and institutions, which results in differential access to opportunities and resources". There are also racial biases that come into play during the delivery of care that impacts these outcomes as well. Unfortunately, this information isn't news to us at MedHaul because our work is done with the often overlooked in mind. We leverage our work with organizations who can serve as advocates for their patients who express transportation needs, which is critical in getting them to or from their medical service appointments, and also can't afford to be simply given a resource that they are expected to be financially responsible for. The need is there more often than not because it is out of financial reach for many. Access barriers, not limited to transportation but also including costs of care and language barriers, can have individual effects on health outcomes but often don't appear as being one singled out cause.

What are some of the ways you've seen your healthcare organizations (as a consumer or as an employee) address social determinants of health?

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MedHaul provides access to quality, inclusive transportation services for often overlooked populations, improving their quality of life and care.

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