Through our investments in birth equity, CHCF aims to improve maternity care and maternal outcomes by, with, and for Black mothers / birthing people* in California. We have chosen to focus on mothers / birthing people because they are an often-overlooked population, forgotten once the baby is born, and are critical members of our families and our society.
CHCF focuses specifically on improving the way the health care system serves the needs of Californians. At the same time, we acknowledge that the health care that people receive represents only a small part of what contributes to their overall health. CHCF focuses on the health care system because, as a society, we spend (and waste) many resources in health care, sometimes causing harm and even death. Although not all drivers of birth inequities can be addressed via the health care system, we believe there are meaningful opportunities for significant improvements within the system and its institutions that can impact maternal morbidity, mortality, and patient experience.
In approaching this work that aims to address longstanding inequities, we know the road will be challenging and that CHCF, as a funder, will not always get it right. We are committed to listening, to approaching the work with cultural humility (PDF), and to partnering with those most impacted by the inequities to find spreadable, scalable approaches for improvement in the California’s health care system. We work in deep collaboration with our grantee partners and have established a CHCF Birth Equity Advisory Group composed of leaders in the field from whom we seek periodic input regarding the portfolio’s direction.