Black Coalition For Safe Mother Hood


Advocate- Someone you trust who is willing to act on your behalf as well as someone who can work well with other members of your healthcare team.

What is an Advocate

Pulse Center for Patient Safety – Guide for Patient Advocates 

Advocate Info from Pulse Center and Joint Commission

Anesthesia and Analgesia (pain relief)- Using medicine to prevent the feeling of pain or another sensation during surgery or other procedures that might be painful (e.g. C-section or in terms of childbirth, epidural).

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists – Pain Relief in Labor and Delivery 

Augmenting Labor- Stimulating the uterus with medication during labor to increase how frequent, how long, and how strong the contractions are.

What to Expect in Labor and Delivery – Augmentation of Labor

Baby Friendly Birth- Designed to optimize mother-baby bonding and to protect, promote and support breastfeeding in the first few days of a new baby’s life.

La Leche League – Skin to Skin with Baby after the Birth

Birth- The baby comes out of the mother’s body.

Normal Healthy Childbirth

Guide to Natural Childbirth

Women’s Health/pregnancy – Childbirth – Stages of Labor

Birthing Room- A room in a hospital that is used for labor and childbirth and is designed to be comfortable and homelike. Breast Feeding / Lactation- The action of feeding a baby with milk from the breast.

Women’s Health – It’s Only Natural – Breastfeeding 

Black Mothers Breastfeeding Association – Breastfeeding Facts

Cesarean Section (c-section)- When surgery is used to take the baby out of the mother. Doctors cut into the mother’s abdomen to get to the baby.

Women’s Health/pregnancy – Childbirth – Labor and Birth – Cesarean Birth

Diabetes- A disease in which blood glucose (blood sugar) levels are above normal.

Centers for Disease Control – Diabetes and Pregnancy 

Doula Support- Doulas are trained to give emotional, physical, and educational support to birthing people and their partners during labor and birth; and sometimes during pregnancy and postpartum.

Maternal Health Task Force – Access to Doula Care

National Black Doula Association

Episiotomy- A procedure that involves making a small cut in the area between the vagina and the anus to enlarge the opening when the baby is about to be born. Episiotomy is not needed for most births and it may cause increased risk of severe tears.

Mayo Clinic – Labor and Delivery – Episiotomy 

Family Practice Doctors- Medical doctors who provide care during pregnancy, delivery, and following birth. Family practice doctors do not perform c-sections.

Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Prenatal Care and Tests

Fetal Monitoring- Detecting or listening to the unborn baby’s heart beat to check on their wellbeing while still inside their mother.

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Patient Resources 

Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Childbirth – Labor and Birth

Forceps- A tool shaped like salad tongs used to assist the doctor in bringing the baby outside the mother.

Cleveland Clinic Forceps Delivery

High Blood Pressure- Blood pressure greater than 140 over 90 mmHg (millimeters of mercury) or higher than usual for the pregnant mom.

Centers for Disease Control High Blood Pressure and Pregnancy 

High-risk Pregnancy- Pregnancies with a greater chance of complications.

High-risk pregnancy

Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Prenatal Care and Tests – High-risk Pregnancy 

Induction of Labor- When a doctor starts your labor for you. How To Decide about Inducing Labor

March of Dimes – Pregnancy – Inducing Labor

Mayo Clinic Labor and Delivery in Depth 

Informed Consent- Informed consent is the process in which a health care provider educates a patient about the risks, benefits, and alternatives of a given procedure or intervention.

Informed Consent

Labor- The process in which the baby and the placenta leave the uterus in three stages.

Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Childbirth – Stages of Labor

Maternal Fetal Medicine (Specialist)- A medical doctor that cares for high-risk pregnancies.

Wikipedia – Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist

Midwife- Provider of prenatal, birth, and postpartum care. Midwives do not perform c-sections. Find a Black Midwife or Doula Normal Delivery/Birth- Labor started on its own, low-risk at the start of labor and remaining so throughout labor and delivery.

Normal Healthy Childbirth

Guide to Natural Childbirth Nurse- A healthcare professional who helps individuals, families, and communities to attain, maintain, or recover optimal health and quality of life.

Wikipedia – Nursing

Obstetrician- Medical doctors who specialize in care of pregnant and birthing mothers.

Women’s Health / Pregnancy – Prenatal Care and Tests 

Patients’ Rights- Those basic rules of conduct between patient and medical caregiver as well as the institutions and people that support them.

New York City Standards for Respectful Care

Birth Justice Bill of Rights

What are patient rights

Physiologic Birth- Allowing your body to go through labor naturally.

Normal Healthy Childbirth

Guide to Natural Childbirth Postpartum Care- Getting care, taking care of yourself after giving birth.

Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Childbirth – Recovering

Postpartum Warning Signs- Signs that something may be wrong and you should get checked out by your doctor or midwife, or go to the nearest emergency room.

March of Dimes/Pregnancy – Warnings Signs after Birth

Preeclampsia- High blood pressure, plus other possible signs and symptoms, which put mom and baby at risk for complications.

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists/Patients – Preeclampsia and High Blood Pressure 

Prenatal Care- Health care you get while you are pregnant.

Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Prenatal Care and Tests

Provider or Healthcare Provider- A Midwife, Doctor, Nurse Practitioner, or Physician Assistant permitted (licensed) by the state to give a range of medical services depending on the training they received. Women’s Health/Pregnancy – Prenatal Care – choosing a prenatal provider Respectful Care- Care organized for and provided to all pregnant and birthing people in a manner that maintains their dignity, privacy and confidentiality, ensures freedom from harm and mistreatment, and enables informed choice and continuous support during labor and childbirth.

New York City Standards for Respectful Care

Rooming In- When the baby stays in the room with you after you’ve given birth.

Cleveland Clinic Health Articles Rooming In

Spontaneous Vaginal Delivery- Giving birth through the vagina without the help of tools to bring the baby out. Vacuum Assisted Vaginal Delivery- When suction is used to help bring the baby out of the mother.

Wikipedia Vacuum Assisted Vaginal Delivery 

Wikipedia Vaginal Delivery 

Vetting Services- To make a prior examination and critical analysis, or detailed evaluation, of a document, a line of action regarding someone or people, etc.: If something is vetted, it is checked carefully to make sure that it meets the requirements that government officials have established regarding the quality of Maternity Care available in the local area. Wikipedia – Vetting