The companies said their partnership aims to reduce inequities in maternal health outcomes and lower mortality rates.
Virtual obstetric care platform Babyscripts is partnering with physician enablement company Privia Health, allowing physicians in Privia’s women’s health division to use Babyscripts with their pregnant and postpartum patients.
Babyscripts’ remote monitoring tools let providers monitor maternal mental health, hypertension, preeclampsia and gestational diabetes, while its app provides educational content for expecting mothers, as well as appointment reminders and obstetrician-approved nutritional and medical guidelines.
Privia and Babyscripts said the goal of their partnership is to reduce inequities in maternal health outcomes and lower maternal mortality rates.
“With this collaboration, Privia Health is casting a vote of confidence for virtual maternity care, expanding the use of Babyscripts to their markets to truly transform maternal outcomes across the US,” Juan Pablo Segura, president and cofounder of Babyscripts, said in a statement. “With Babyscripts, Privia is making prenatal and postpartum care available at any time and any place, to help their providers move the needle on outcomes for the most vulnerable among our population.”
WHY IT MATTERS
The U.S. has recorded a steady increase of pregnancy-related deaths since the late ’80s, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 1987, the agency reported 7.2 pregnancy-related deaths per 100,000 live births. By 2017, the maternal mortality rate had shot up to 17.3.
Risks are much higher for Black women. According to data compiled by the Commonwealth Fund, the maternal mortality rate for Black women sits at 37.1, two and a half times the rate for white women, and three times the rate for Hispanic women.
“According to the CDC, 60% of maternal deaths are preventable. We need to have a consistent strategy that addresses all patient risks and involves all stakeholders in order to drive that number down to zero,” Melissa Montague, vice president and general manager of Privia Women’s Health and Pediatrics, said in a statement.
“For Privia, that means offering our providers access to cutting-edge maternity care capabilities to support their patients outside of the office, from the moment a mother finds out she’s pregnant to a year after childbirth, which is when so many women fall through the cracks in our healthcare system.”
Pregnant patients are also starting to expect digital interactions with their healthcare providers. A Xealth report released in March 2020, just before COVID-19 pandemic-related shutdowns forced patients and doctors to take visits to telehealth, found 47% of new and pregnant patients expected to contact their providers digitally.
THE LARGER TREND
The women’s digital health market is expected to grow, though it currently makes up a small portion of digital health investment.
In December, Babyscripts announced it had raised another $4 million in funding.
In 2019, the company entered into several partnerships: with AmeriHealth Caritas DC to provide their products to the managed care organization’s patients, with Inova Health System and with Penn Medicine to build a tool to remotely monitor patients with hypertension.