NJDOH Releases Maternity Care Report Card

By: Paige Britt, Follow South Jersey Intern

SOUTH JERSEY – The New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) released its annual New Jersey Hospital Maternity Care Report Card, detailing the state of maternal health care in New Jersey.

The report outlines key metrics on maternal health care in 2020 and uses data from licensed birthing general acute care hospitals in New Jersey. The report includes data on hospital-specific and statewide surgical births, complication rates, and severe maternal birth complications. This year’s report also showed a continued decline in cesarean delivery rates. 

Cesarean deliveries, or c-sections, have higher rates of complications compared to vaginal deliveries per 1,000 delivery hospitalizations. This includes obstetric hemorrhage, post-admission infections, and Severe Maternal Morbidity. 

Governor Murphy has signed 43 pieces of maternal and infant health legislation focusing on family planning, Medicaid, health equity, substance use disorder, and data innovation. This legislation also established the report card, the New Jersey Maternal Mortality Review Committee, and the New Jersey Maternal Data Center. 

In January of 2021, First Lady Tammy Murphy announced the Nurture NJ Maternal and Infant Health Strategic Plan. The goal of the plan is to reduce New Jersey’s maternal mortality rate by 50% over the next five years and to eliminate racial disparities in birth outcomes. 

Tammy Murphy expressed the importance of making New Jersey a safe place for mothers. 

“When we launched the Nurture NJ Maternal and Infant Health Strategic Plan in 2021, one of our many recommendations was to lower the cesarean delivery rate for mothers in our state,” Tammy Murphy stated in a press release from the DOH. “It is promising to see this statistic improve and we are incredibly hopeful it is a harbinger of overall improvement in our maternal health outcomes. There is still much more to do to ensure that every mother in New Jersey enjoys a healthy and safe pregnancy and birth, particularly our Black and Hispanic mothers, but I remain committed to continuing this work with our dedicated health care professionals and building on these best practices so that we can achieve our goal of making New Jersey the safest, most equitable place in the nation to deliver and raise a baby.”

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