The N.C. Health Information Exchange Authority (NC HIEA), within the N.C. Department of Information Technology, is helping develop solutions to health care disparities affecting Black mothers, who are more likely to experience pregnancy-related complications, and their infants.
NC HIEA is meeting the data needs of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill’s study, ACURE4Moms, or Accountability for Care through Undoing Racism and Equity for Moms, which seeks to improve health outcomes for Black mothers and infants.
Forty clinics in the study are full participants in NC Health Connex, the state’s health information exchange operated by NC HIEA.
NC HIEA has developed a Maternal Early Warning System, which notifies facilities when a patient has a risk factor for low birthweight. Medical providers can then address patients’ underlying causes for low birthweight. Half of the study participants will have access to this feature.
In addition, NC HIEA will develop a dashboard, updated quarterly, that shows gaps in health care outcomes by race and ethnicity. Providers can see differences in pregnancy complications across races and improve care for affected patients.
The data from NC HIEA will help achieve the study goals to decrease the number of low birthweights and reduce discrimination experienced by Black patients during prenatal visits.
The study will run through July 2026 and is funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute.