University Hospitals and Babyscripts, the virtual care platform for managing obstetrics, are collaborating to provide expectant mothers access to the Babyscripts myJourney app during the entirety of their prenatal journey and beyond. The effort is aimed at bridging the digital divide, reducing maternal health inequities, and targeting maternal mortality and morbidity rates by enabling OB-GYN and midwifery practices across the UH health system to offer virtual care experiences during pregnancy and postpartum.
“Maternal mortality and morbidity rates in Ohio are only slightly better than the national average, which is shockingly high, and women of color are suffering the most,” said Patti DePompei, RN, MSN, President, UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s and UH MacDonald Women’s hospitals. “We’re committed to delivering the highest quality prenatal and postpartum care to all our expectant moms and their babies, and this technology can help us bridge that gap.”
Through the Babyscripts platform, UH patients have access to the myJourney app, which delivers gestational age-appropriate educational content, email campaigns, satisfaction surveys, and weight monitoring; as well as evidence-based guidelines approved by the patient’s caregiver in the form of daily nutritional, medical and lifestyle action items. The app follows the patient through their child’s first birthday.
This program reflects University Hospitals and Babyscripts shared commitment to reduce systemic racial and ethnic inequities in both maternal and infant outcomes in Ohio. Black women in Ohio are 2.2 times more likely to die from childbirth than their white peers, are more likely to experience severe maternal morbidity, and experience preterm birth at a rate 48% higher than their white peers. Additionally, the pandemic has significantly changed the landscape in which pregnant women seek care and broader support during their pregnancy, exacerbating existing barriers to care for minority women.
“Data tells us that it was more dangerous to give birth in 2019 than it was in 1999, particularly for Black women. Healthcare cannot be excellent if it is not equitable,” said Nancy Cossler, MD, OB-GYN, and Chief of System Quality for Obstetrics for University Hospitals. “It is our hope that through this advanced technology and remote monitoring, adverse outcomes can be prevented and ultimately save the lives of mothers across our region.”
“We’ve long known the benefits of technology for delivering equitable care, but the pandemic has given stakeholders the necessary push for widespread implementation,” said Juan Pablo Segura, President and co-founder of Babyscripts, “University Hospitals is seeing the opportunity to deliver high-quality pregnancy care to all their patients, especially the underserved, and we are excited to support them through our technology.”
Babyscripts has spent the last six years building a clinically-validated, virtual care platform to allow OBGYNs to deliver a new model of prenatal care.