"Given the remarkable advancements we have made across nearly every aspect of health care in the last quarter century, it is shocking that women in the U.S. are more likely to suffer a pregnancy-related death today than in the 1990s.
The danger is even greater for women of color."
- Dr. Susan R. Bailey, MD
Former President, American Medical Association
Our country is in crisis. For years, we've been aware of the Black maternal death rates. Last year, in May of 2022, Louisiana senator Bill Cassidy essentially remarked that if you eliminate Black maternal deaths, Louisana's maternal death rates really aren't abnormal compared to the rest of the country.
This statement, coming from a senator whose state holds a record of 4:1 Black maternal deaths for every white maternal death, demonstrates our country's passive acceptance of Black maternal death as a matter of course rather than a dire situation requiring immediate action and rectification.
This is where Abide is different and where we take up space. We opened our Easy Access™ Clinic in October of 2021 in South Dallas, a community where the pervasive disease of systemic racism has resulted in:
• The highest number of people living 185% below the poverty line of any city in America
• 48% of single mothers living in poverty 38% of children living in poverty, with 28% lacking adequate food and nutrition
• 27,000+ residents living in poverty despite being employed full-time
In our community, an average of 7 out of every 1000 live births ends in death. The causes are complex but range from various factors, including low birth weight, maternal complications, SIDS, and lack of adequate prenatal care.
Maternal justice pioneer Jennie Joseph, the founder of Commonsense Childbirth, birthed the concept of our Easy Access™ Clinic. She created "The JJ Way®," a system that believes that all people deserve a healthy pregnancy, birth, and baby so no one is ever turned away — regardless of ability to pay!
Because of the generosity of individual donors, foundations, and other entities, we can provide holistic, equitable, judgment free care at a low- cost to our community. Although Abide, as an organization, is still relatively in its infancy stage, we have already gained massive traction in our community. Our clinic was highlighted in a segment of ABC Nightline, where we receive national recognition for our work.
Within the next year, we are opening a Birth and Collective Care Center in the Fort Worth community, where maternal deaths are happening at a rate of 25.4 per 100,000 live births.
The Abide Birth and Collective Care Center will include:
• 4 birth suites
• 2 postpartum recovery suites
• Housing for a student and resident midwife
• holistic services (massage therapy and chiropractic care
• Prenatal Yoga
Additionally, clients can receive a variety of services from our team of Black licensed medical providers including:
• Pregnancy testing and confirmation of pregnancy
• Glucose testing to manage gestational diabetes
• Doppler and 4k ultrasound services
• Urinalysis and urine screenings
• 36 week OB panel
• And more
A fundamental tenet of our organization is that our providers look like the people we service, which is why we prioritize working with BIPOC providers. This is rooted in the research that demonstrates Black babies have a 50% increased chance of survival when their provider is also Black. Our efforts are sustained through a variety of channels, including multi-year funding partnerships with foundations, individual donors, and our major funding campaigns, which includes North Texas Giving Day
Learn more about our mission, programs, and impact by visiting www.abidewomen.org