In March of 2022, New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced a broad effort to address maternal and infant health disparities and mortality rates rooted in racism and community disinvestment. The announcement included three programs:

  1. Citywide Doula Initiative
  2. The Midwifery Initiative
  3. Maternity Hospital Quality Improvement Network (MHQIN)

The Citywide Doula Initiative alone aims to train 50 doulas and reach 500 families by the end of June. Through the program, families will be provided three prenatal visits, support during labor and delivery, and four postpartum visits. The city is focusing efforts on 33 neighborhoods, people eligible for Medicaid, and those with previous traumatic births, who have no labor support, live in a shelter, are in foster care, or have a high-risk medical condition. In addition to certifying 50 doulas, the initiative will help uncertified doulas become certified. Finally, the initiative will work to create doula-friendly hospital policies and practices and collaborate with organizations, government, and healthcare partners to advocate for system level change.

Connected News Articles

New York City to offer free doula access in bid to reduce maternal mortality, Good Morning America (March 24, 2022)

NYC aims to reduce racial inequities in maternal health care by offering free access to doulas, CNN Health (March 27, 2022)

New York’s Mayor Eric Adams Announces the Citywide Doula Initiative, Essence (March 31, 2022)

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