by Chamidae Ford
(This article is published in recognition of Black Maternal Health Week, which takes place every year from April 11–17. The week is intended to deepen the national conversation about Black maternal health in the US; amplify community-driven policy, research, and care solutions; and center the voices of Black mamas, women, femmes, families, and stakeholders.)
Childbirth is often thought to be the most magical experience one can have. But for Black women, the road to motherhood can often be paved with horror due to the racism they face in the medical field.
Shayla Akande gave birth to a baby girl on January 24, 2021. Although her story ends with a happy and healthy baby, the birthing process wasn’t the smooth transition she had been hoping for.
Continue reading How Medical Racism Robs Black Families of Joyous Birth Experiences
by Carolyn Bick
The dire warnings the state’s top health officials shared with the public just last week appear to be coming to pass.
In a Washington State Department of Health (DOH) COVID-19 briefing on Nov. 18, DOH Health Officer Kathy Lofy shared several charts that show what Lofy called a “dramatic,” exponential growth rate in cases of COVID-19 and “sharp increase” in hospitalizations in Western Washington. She also said that the effective reproductive number — also known as the R-naught or R0 number, which is the number of people one person will infect — has continued to rise. It now stands at 1.7 in Eastern Washington, and 1.8 in Western Washington.
Continue reading “We Admitted 10 Patients in Five Hours”: State, Hospitals Rapidly Approaching Critical Case Counts and Hospitalizations
Two Swedish Hospital ICU nurses take us inside the visitor-less ICU, tell us how they’re attempting to cope, and let the community know how it can support them.
words by Ari Robin McKenna
portraits by Jovelle Tamayo
ICU nurses are part of a human network of dozens of essential hospital workers whose jobs in normal times interlock to catch people who fall seriously ill, and for weeks now each of these vital links has been strained by the additional weight of caring for patients in the throes of COVID-19. Their collective load-bearing is ongoing, and the weeks ahead will be marked by uncertainty and concerns for their own safety.
Continue reading Words of The Irreplaceable: Swedish Hospital ICU Nurses Speak