The Center for Black Maternal Health and Reproductive Justice (CBMHRJ) was launched in March 2022 and was developed as an extension of the Maternal Outcomes for Translational Health Equity Research, also known as the MOTHER Lab, founded, and directed by Dr. Ndidiamaka Amutah-Onukagha, PhD, MPH, CHES, the Julia A. Okoro Professor of Black Maternal Health and an Assistant Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Department of Public Health and Community Medicine in the School of Medicine. The vision and rationale of the CBMHRJ is to protect the Black birthing experience by advocating for quality, equitable, and respectful care in childbirth. The center seeks to create a world where Black women can safely, efficiently, and comfortably receive equitable access to healthcare services without having to navigate through racism and/or discrimination in medical settings. The CBMHRJ envisions that the interdisciplinary research center will be integrated with faculty from all Tufts schools. The mission of the CBMHRJ is to foster academic and community-engaged research in support of the center’s goals to conduct maternal health research with a focus on Black maternal health and eliminating inequities. The main goal of the center is to foster maternal health research at Tufts University School of Medicine, with a particular focus on improving the health of Black mothers and their babies by reducing maternal health disparities.
Watch Dr. AO’s TED Talk called “A Broken Healthcare System: Racism and Maternal Health”
“No part of this overturn is positive,” says Ndidiamaka Amutah-Onukagha, the Julia A. Okoro Professor in Black Maternal Health at Tufts University School of Medicine and director of the Center for Black Maternal Health and Reproductive Justice (CBMHRJ) at Tufts University. “For women of color who were already in a pandemic of racism prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, this is another layer that further exacerbates underlying disparities and that will leave them disproportionately impacted.”