Project: Expanding the Midwifery Model of Care in Communities of Color

Applicant Organization: California Association of Midwives

Racial inequities in birth outcomes persist. And research shows that chronic stress, including racism and discrimination, negatively impacts maternal, infant and child health outcomes (Rohan et al, 2013). Licensed midwives (LMs) provide safe, respectful and client-centered maternity and well woman care in homes, birth centers and clinical birth settings. Yet, fewer than 5% of LMs in California identify as midwives of color. In order to reduce inequities in birth outcomes, the California Association of Midwives aims to 1) increase awareness about the midwifery model of care, particularly among under resourced, and underserved women of color and in medically underserved areas; and 2) increase access to midwifery care for all families by improving support for student midwives of color and increasing the number of LMs in California enrolled as independent Medi-Cal providers.