Policy Options to Advance Mental Health Care During Pregnancy

Joy Burkhard is the founder and executive director of 2020 Mom, a non-profit social change organization aggressively working to close gaps in maternal mental health care. She has an extensive background working in quality improvement and legislative compliance for a fortune 50 health insurer and has a passion for improving access, quality, and innovation in the healthcare delivery system. She has been recognized for her leadership and vision with many awards, including The American Public Health Association’s Maternal Child Health Leadership and Advocacy Award, and the Emerging Leader Award from The Federal Health and Human Services Agency, Office of Women’s Health.

Contact: joy@2020mom.org

Veronica Gillispie-Bell, M.D., is a Board-Certified Obstetrician & Gynecologist and Associate Professor for Ochsner Health in New Orleans, Louisiana. She serves as the Senior Site Lead and Section Head of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Ochsner Kenner. Additionally, she serves as the Director of Quality for Women’s Services for the Ochsner Health System and is the Medical Director of the Minimally Invasive Center for the Treatment of Uterine Fibroids. She earned her medical degree from Meharry Medical College and completed her residency training at Ochsner Health System. She has a Master of Applied Science in Patient Safety and Healthcare Quality from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Additionally, she has received certification in Diversity and Inclusion from Cornell University. Clinically, in addition to providing obstetric care, Dr. Gillispie-Bell performs advanced laparoscopic and robotic assisted laparoscopic procedures and is known nationally for her expertise in management of heavy menstrual bleeding associated with fibroids. Dr. Gillispie-Bell is also the Medical Director of the Louisiana Perinatal Quality Collaborative and Pregnancy Associated Mortality Review for the Louisiana Department of Health. In this role, she leads initiatives in the state of Louisiana to improve birth outcomes for all birthing persons in Louisiana and eliminate the Black-white disparity gap. Dr. Gillispie-Bell has testified before Congress and led Congressional briefings to inform on the drivers of maternal mortality and legislative policy to improve maternal mortality and eliminate the Black-white disparity gap. Additionally, she serves in several leadership roles promoting efforts to achieve health equity. She has served in several local and national leadership roles and received many accolades for her clinical, academic, and community services contributions.

Contact: vgillispie@ochsner.org

Carrie Hanlon is project director at the National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP), where she analyzes state policies designed to improve population health and advance health and racial equity, particularly for pregnant or parenting individuals and young children. She leads research and provides technical assistance to states. Her focus areas include Medicaid payment, care delivery, and performance measurement strategies to promote access to high-quality perinatal care, consider social determinants of health, and align systems to promote whole person care, including oral health. Prior to joining NASHP in 2007, Carrie was a planning and research associate at the Maine Quality Forum, a division of Maine’s Dirigo Health Agency devoted to health care quality improvement. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Elmira College, Carrie holds a master’s degree in public policy from the George Washington University.

Contact: chanlon@nashp.org

Kay Matthews lives in Houston Texas and is the Founder of The Shades of Blue Project. Graduating with a 2-year degree in early childhood development from North Harris College located in Houston Texas, and furthered her education in the mental health field by becoming a Licensed Community Health Worker. She has also received numerous awards from both her community and her peers, and sits on the Board and is Partners with several National organizations. Along with writing her first Best Seller a Self-Help Journal: 365 Days To Recovery “Finding Your Way Out Of The Darkness” and Recovery State of Mind Daily Journal. Kay is actively teaching and speaking to women of all ages to help them to better understand how important it is to advocate for themselves before during and after childbirth. Helping them to realize that they have the ability to have a successful birth outcome and assuring that they know of the resources available in which it pertains to maternal mental health. To Kay this is the most important aspect of the work she does within the community and it is the motivation that she uses to continue to educate communities worldwide.

Contact: shadesofblueproject0529@gmail.com

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