The Value of Relationship-Based Care for Pregnant People of Color

In this video, Sharon Taylor-Smalls, a member of the Association of Black Cardiologists, discusses her experience as a nurse midwife who frequently cares for pregnant people of color. Midwives are trained to offer relationship-based continuity of care in various settings, including homes, birth centers and hospitals, Sharon explains.

Relationship-based care is important to all patients, and especially pregnant people of color, who are worried about delivering in hospitals because of reported bad outcomes—a valid concern, since the United States has the worst rates of maternal and infant health outcomes for all industrialized countries, with pregnant people of color being three times more likely to die during pregnancy and childbirth than white women.

"I'm learning that many pregnant and postpartum people do not appear to care," Sharon says, "because they simply don't have a relationship with their provider. This relationship is important, especially since increased cardiovascular risk in populations of color is greatly driven by psychosocial stress, including racism."

Visit OWN's Heart Health page throughout the month of February for vital updates and information about cardiac disease prevention.