Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Ethics and Policy Studies


Political Science

First Committee Member

Kenneth Fernandez, Chair

Second Committee Member

Michele Kuenzi

Third Committee Member

Mark Lutz

Graduate Faculty Representative

Christopher Cochran

Number of Pages



One aspect of America's health care system that illustrates the great need for health care reform, but receives little attention, is prenatal care. The United States has the second worst newborn mortality rate in the developed world. Adequate prenatal care results in healthier babies, more full-term babies delivered, and a decrease in other serious problems related to pregnancy and health care costs. The purpose of this study is to examine the history of prenatal policy and how it has developed into what it is today, to understand why medically indigent women are not receiving adequate prenatal care, and to highlight effective practices for enrolling women into prenatal care in order to enable healthy births and infants and to save on pregnancy related health care costs. The culmination of this study is an in-depth analysis of a Centering Pregnancy program, an innovative form of prenatal care.


Centering; Health and environmental sciences; Health care reform; Newborn infants — Mortality; Philosophy; Poor women; Prenatal care; Social sciences; Women's health services


Health Policy | Policy History, Theory, and Methods | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Women's Studies

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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