NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) – Expecting parents can learn more about resources available to them tonight during a virtual town hall.
Delegate Cia Price of Newport News is hosting the event, which will feature representatives from Sentara CarePlex, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Smart Beginnings and the Virginia Department of Health, among others.
It’s happening as the commonwealth closes out its first official Maternal Health Awareness Month.
“It’s a very, very important moment,” Price said. “We wanted to do an event during July to make sure that we could get all of the information out there that pregnant people need in order to have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby.”
Part of the discussion will focus on outcomes for Black mothers and other women of color, who face a higher mortality rate during pregnancy and labor.
“It’s very hard to have a conversation about maternal health in Virginia without addressing the disparities and the very dire situation that Black women often find themselves in when they’re pregnant,” Price said.
In 2019, Governor Ralph Northam proposed 22-million dollars in funding to eliminate the racial disparity in maternal outcomes in Virginia by the year 20-25.
Price says she’ll continue to fight for that money, even as Virginia faces a budget shortfall because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“We do want to protect that funding, because this is literally life and death,” she said. “We will be addressing some of the work that’s being done to eliminate those disparities, but also some of the resources that pregnant women can have in order to do their part of the dialogue between the practitioners themselves too.”
Although disparities in healthcare will be part of the conversation, Price stressed that all women are welcome to learn more about resources available to pregnant women, and what the speakers are doing in the community to help them
You can join the round table tonight at 6:30 by visiting Price’s Facebook page.