Cambridge, MA and Lansing, MI – To help connect pregnant and postpartum Michigan residents to support and assistance, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) has selected Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA), a global leader in health technology to provide access for Medicaid-eligible families to the Philips Pregnancy+ mobile application. The Philips Pregnancy+ App is the most downloaded pregnancy app in the world, with over 55 million downloads globally. It supports parents from the moment they discover they are pregnant by offering personalized content, expert-written information, as well as interactive 3D models to track a baby’s development.
Philips has created a unique and personalized experience, and MDHHS will provide access to the app for Medicaid-eligible users, which account for 45% of all births in Michigan. MDHHS has worked with Philips to further tailor the app to make it easier for participants to access available state support programs.
Pregnancy+ is the state’s latest effort to improve access to care for expectant mothers and improve outcomes for them and their families. The app helps point users to other state programs including Michigan's Home Visiting service, which has been shown to improve maternal and infant health outcomes, breastfeeding resources and support, information on RSV and flu, mental health resources, as well as other assets for healthy moms and babies.
“MDHHS is excited to be able to offer the Pregnancy+ App to Michigan families to support them during this exciting time in their lives,” said Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, chief medical executive. “We want to ensure they are able to access the resources they need, and to learn about important topics including immunizations, hearing screening, breastfeeding and other information designed to improve the health of moms and babies.”
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the United States has the highest maternal mortality rate among high-income countries and is the only one where maternal mortality is increasing among Black women. Black women are nearly three times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications than white women. U.S. women of reproductive age are also significantly more likely to have problems paying their medical bills or to skip or delay needed care because of cost. The NIH pointed to a need for higher investment in Social Determinants of Health and access to an alternative perinatal workforce. Fortunately, MDHHS has numerous programs in place and informational resources to support pregnant and postpartum mothers and families. They anticipate this initiative will help remove barriers to accessing care, such as race, ethnicity, insurance type and income, from determining the type of pregnancy/postpartum experience an individual receives.