Cleveland Clinic hospital is 1 of 4 in the nation to implement new labor and delivery model

A new labor and delivery model was recently implemented at Cleveland Clinic Akron General in Ohio, making it one of only four other hospitals in the nation to take the approach. 

The initiative, known as "TeamBirth," prioritizes regular huddles to check in with members of the care team, patients and family to ensure all parties are on the same page when it comes to birth preferences and the current state of things, according to the news release. By using a planning board that lists all caregivers on a patient's team and meeting at intervals to discuss the patient's preferences, condition and needs frequently, expectations are more likely to be clearly communicated.

Akron General has been piloting the program since October, and although it is still early in its implementation, "anecdotal patient feedback indicates patients appreciate the intentionality of highlighting their preferences and having a structured process to ensure shared decision-making," a March 21 news release explains. Further data collection efforts about patient outcomes and the effectiveness of this new program are currently being collected. 

Improving communication with this pilot model is part of an effort led by the March of Dimes organization and the HHS' maternal healthcare initiative that aims to also improve equity in labor and delivery outcomes.  

"Pregnant people in the U.S. are experiencing severe complications and dying at higher rates than any other industrialized country and if you are a pregnant Black person, your rates are even higher," Jennifer Savitski, MD, chair of obstetrics and gynecology at Akron General, said in a statement. "The goal of TeamBirth is to address those unacceptable outcomes, to put the patient and their preferences at the center of their birthing experience and to root out the implicit and explicit biases that create inequity in maternal healthcare."

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