HRSA report evaluates rural maternal health program

The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) released a report last month evaluating the Rural Maternity and Obstetrics Management Strategies Program. The program, which completed its first year in August 2021, uses a network approach to coordinate and improve maternal health care from preconception to postpartum; telehealth services to increase access to care in rural areas; potential aggregation of low-volume rural obstetric services; and payment structures promoting financial sustainability for access to maternal care. The cohort includes networks in Missouri, New Mexico and Texas providing prenatal, delivery and postpartum care to more than 3,000 rural mothers. Hiring patient navigators emerged as an early success strategy, according to participants. The networks also laid the groundwork for expanding telehealth.