COVID-19; health disparities; birth disparities; preterm birth; telehealth; maternal child health; low birth weight; Florida


Maternal and Child Health | Medicine and Health Sciences | Public Health | Women's Health


Out of 36 developed countries, the U.S. ranks 33 for infant mortality. In the U.S, the infant mortality rates occur at higher rates among African Americans. Black infants have a higher likelihood to die from low birth weights or other birth-related complications compared to White infants. Furthermore, some of these women reside in unsafe pregnancy areas also known as “materno toxic” zones which are characterized by the presence of crime, food insecurity etc. Though Black mothers are 2.3 times more likely to receive late or no prenatal care compared to White mothers, the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated these issues by making it more difficult to seek prenatal care due to physical distancing. Telehealth, which is defined as the use of technology for healthcare delivery, has been adopted by midwives and OB/GYNs to provide prenatal care for pregnant women during the pandemic. A clinical protocol was used to deliver care to new and old patients using telehealth procedures due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A survey was used to evaluate the effectiveness in birth outcomes and patient satisfaction. Results demonstrate the use of telemedical yields positive birth outcomes and patient satisfaction.