Training through a Novel Community-Engaged Research Project to Reduce Pregnancy-Associated Morbidity and Mortality from Maternal Sepsis in New York City



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Maternal sepsis is the second-leading cause of maternal mortality in the U.S., with a disproportionate impact among racial and ethnic minorities. Although maternal sepsis is largely preventable, there remains little evidence concerning the management of risk factors to ensure safe and equitable maternal care during delivery and transition to postpartum. The EnCoRe MoMS study (Engaging Communities to Reduce Morbidity from Maternal Sepsis) is a comprehensive, community-engaged project focused on reducing pregnancy-associated sepsis risk and promoting maternal health equity in NYC. Community stakeholders are integrated in the community research design process through the Community Organization Leadership Advisory Board (CoLAB). I aimed to contribute to the qualitative portion of the ongoing EnCoRe MoMS study to better understand how the social determinants of health impact the lived experiences of patients and how qualitative interviewing can uncover specific barriers and proposed solutions that may be implemented across the pregnancy continuum. We developed an efficient workflow for the recruitment, consent, and enrollment of patients, then conducted qualitative in-depth interviews (IDIs) with postpartum patients and community focus group discussions (FGDs). Major themes explored during IDIs included prenatal and labor/delivery experiences, facilitators/barriers to accessing quality maternal care, respectful care, community-based resources and solutions, etc. (see table). Ultimately, qualitative data collection through IDIs and the FGD allowed us to observe the lived experiences of patients at high risk of pregnancy and postpartum complications, including sepsis.

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The 62nd Annual Medical Student Research Forum at UT Southwestern Medical Center (Tuesday, January 30, 2024, 3-6 p.m., D1.700 Lecture Hall)

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Zhao, A., Richardson, B., LaHote, J., Oktem, A., Plumlee, A., & Hall, K. S. (2024, January 30). Training through a novel community-engaged research project to reduce pregnancy-associated morbidity and mortality from maternal sepsis in New York City [Poster session]. 62nd Annual Medical Student Research Forum, Dallas, Texas.

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