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Women of color are at higher risk for pregnancy complications. Doctors urged to listen

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For Deborah Brown, a certified nurse midwife at AdventHealth, the statistics about how women of color are at higher risk of complications and death after childbirth are more than numbers, they are real people in her every day practice.

She makes the time to really listen to her patients and urges other nurses and doctors to do the same because closing the health gap for Black women will take intentional cooperation at the bedside between clinicians and patients, Brown recently told WESH Channel 2.

"The onus is on us as health care providers and patients," Brown told the station. "I think we need to hear our mamas. We need to understand them, see the whole person. Here at AdventHealth, that's what we do, see the whole person," she said.

Unconscious bias, lack of health coverage and funding remain hurdles to leveling the playing field. But Brown said patients can also take a more active role in their own care.

"The patient should be asking where are we now, how's my status, what do I need to do about any of my numbers. Is everything OK? What I find patients are more consumed with is the gender, the gender reveal," she said.

To watch the full WESH report, click here.

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