Episode #13

Black Maternal Health:

Racial Disparities in the US Healthcare System


Are you aware of the racial disparity that exists in the US healthcare system? And did you know that some people are actually dying unnecessarily as a result?

Today, Sara talks to Dr. Monique Rainford, an OB/GYN from Jamaica, who recently did a phenomenal TEDx talk, called America’s Maternal Nightmare, about black maternal health in America. In her talk, Dr. Rainford peeled back the layers and very clearly revealed the disparities that exist within the US healthcare system, particularly when it comes to black maternal health.

According to statistics, the health of African American women is worse than that of white American women. Dr. Rainford is an advocate for health equality and well-being for black American women.

Tune in to this episode of Dear White Women to find out about the effects of racism on women's health, and to learn why the disparity exists here in America, what can be done to overcome implicit bias, and what healthcare providers can do to enhance the kind of care they are providing.

"When you're more aware of your biases you can do more to counteract it."

Dr. Monique Rainford

Show Highlights: 

  • Some really shocking statistics that the average American might not be aware of - these really blew Dr. Rainford's mind!

  • How Dr. Rainford was able to gain a good understanding of why the disparity exists here in America.

  • Even the world-famous tennis player, Serena Williams, had a lot of difficulties when she was having her baby.

  • We need to uncover our implicit biases because we all have them.

  • People have implicit, or unconscious bias, so well-intentioned healthcare providers may give substandard care to someone because of their race, without even realizing that they are biased.

  • Having a good relationship with your doctor can really have a positive impact on a patient's standard of care.

  • Everybody delivering healthcare should be aware of and understand implicit bias, and they should deliver excellent health care to everyone, in spite of their biases.

  • So many African American women, who have done everything that they could have possibly done to advocate for themselves, have ended up dying because they were ignored by their healthcare providers.

  • African American women in the US are three to four times more likely to have maternal deaths than white women, and 60% of these deaths are preventable.

  • Dr. Rainford discusses what individuals can do to improve their health outcomes and prevent unnecessary deaths.

  • The knowledge-based emergency tool kits that were introduced and implemented in California led to a 55% reduction in the maternal mortality rate.

  • There is hope, but it takes each one of us speaking up and participating in order to drive improvements.


Email: Hello@dearwhitewomen.com

For the Harvard University implicit associations tests, go to https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/takeatest.html

Dr. Rainford’s TEDx Talk - America’s Maternal Nightmare

Dr. Monique Rainford's book, Please God Send Me A Husband, is available on her website, or from Amazon.

Contact Dr. Monique Rainford’s Website: www.moniquerainford.com 

Contact Dr. Monique Rainford about speaking or coaching email: drmoniquerainford@gmail.com


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Sara BlanchardComment