Blue Cross Blue Shield of Mississippi

Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi Making Childbirth Safer for Mississippi Women

The United States has the highest maternal death rate among the world’s developed nations with 26.4 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births*. In Mississippi, that number is 20.8, but even one is one too many. According to a study of the CDC Foundation, 700 to 900 childbirth-related deaths each year are avoidable, and Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi (BCBSMS) is taking steps to make childbirth safer for Mississippi women.

As part of its Maternity Quality Model, BCBSMS is partnering with the Mississippi Perinatal Quality Collaborative (MSPQC) to facilitate four training sessions for Network Hospital teams for implementation of clinical best-practice guidelines, known as Maternal Safety Bundles, focused on obstetric hemorrhage (bleeding) and severe hypertension. These bundles were developed by the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM), a national data-driven maternal safety initiative, and are designed to improve the safety of childbirth with a goal of eliminating preventable harm and death. The training sessions in Flowood, Oxford and Greenville brought healthcare professionals from BCBSMS Network Hospitals together to engage in hands-on, simulation-based training scenarios focusing on readiness, prevention, treatment and reporting related to obstetric hemorrhage. Blood-loss simulation stations included vaginal delivery, C-section delivery and accurate measurement of blood loss. A similar session is planned in Hattiesburg.

Through its Maternity Quality Model, BCBSMS is helping hospitals deliver evidence-based, best-practice care to mothers and babies. The Maternity Quality Model is a statewide quality-improvement initiative in collaboration with BCBSMS Network Hospitals and the MSPQC that engages hospitals to reduce maternal and infant harm and death. As a result of this work, five hospitals in the state have achieved Baby-Friendly Hospital Designation, and 91 percent of all hospitals in Mississippi that deliver babies are actively working toward achieving or maintaining this quality designation. Also, nearly all elective deliveries before 39 weeks of pregnancy have been eliminated, and breastfeeding rates have increased significantly from 49 percent in 2015 to 65 percent in 2018.

Learn more about our Maternity Quality Model and Women’s Health Initiative and how they're helping to shape a healthier future for Mississippi families.

*Source: USA Today

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