Maternal Mortality, Legislative Insights, & Balancing It All w/ GA State Rep. Lauren Daniel

Ever wondered about the House and Senate members who pass over a thousand bills every year? Can you name more than the few that media outlets highlight? Most likely not. Candid{ate} Conversations” is here to bridge the gap between the familiar names in politics and the depth of their roles that often go unnoticed. We’re introducing you to elected officials you may have heard of but have little insight into their day-to-day responsibilities.

Welcome to Candid{ate} Conversations, a unique platform for candid discussions with elected officials and individuals striving to be elected. We embark on insightful conversations that explore the challenges, aspirations, and visions of political leaders and aspiring candidates. Whether you prefer to listen to podcasts or read about our discussions, we aim to provide valuable insights into the political landscape, policies, and the people driving change in our communities and nation.

In this episode of The Janelle King Show series “Candid{ate} Conversations,” join us as we sit down with guest GA State Rep. Lauren Daniel as we cover pressing topics like maternal mortality and national politics, emphasizing bipartisan solutions. Rep. Daniel discusses Republican-led initiatives, dispelling partisan misconceptions in healthcare. We explore maternal health policies and effective leadership in national politics.

[Below, you’ll find an edited snippet from our conversation, streamlined for clarity and ease of reading. This excerpt is taken from various parts of the discussion, not necessarily from the beginning.]


Rep. Lauren Daniel: I represent Henry County we have somewhere over 250,000 people and we have 12 birthing rooms in our Hospital

Rep. Lauren Daniel: so after talking to OBS and nurses there. It’s not uncommon for women to end up giving birth in the hallway.

Janelle King: Wow.

Rep. Lauren Daniel: Due to limited capacity, a Review Committee might overlook this aspect since they focus more on numbers rather than individual experiences. For instance, they wouldn’t consider factors like the number of birthing rooms available in a hospital. All that plays into someone’s outcome?

Janelle King: I appreciated your mention of birthing rooms because it touches on a critical aspect. It made me think about the potential risks associated with giving birth in less-than-ideal environments, such as emergency rooms or hallways, which could increase exposure to infections and other complications for both the mother and the baby. This issue often goes unnoticed, but addressing it could contribute significantly to reducing maternal mortality rates. Regarding the impact on black women, there’s a common perception that they are disproportionately affected, particularly in terms of maternal mortality. Could you share your observations on this from the commission’s perspective?

Rep. Lauren Daniel: Yeah it is a little inflated. It does disproportionately affect black women, yes. And no, because it goes back to how many deaths are counted.

Rep. Lauren Daniel: If you include the pregnancy-associated death. Your motor vehicle accidents, homicides, domestic violence. If you include those numbers, then you get an inflated number

Janelle King: got it.

Rep. Lauren Daniel: If we focus solely on health disparities, it affects Black women about 3% more than other races..

Rep. Lauren Daniel: a lot of the

Rep. Lauren Daniel: Medical providers indicate risk factors such as obesity and high blood pressure, which are common existing conditions among Black women.

Rep. Lauren Daniel: How can you impact policy without implementing measures that promote better health and nutrition?

Janelle King: Yes.

Janelle King: You know, whenever this topic comes up, especially as a black woman, I reflect on my own experiences. While I haven’t given birth due to some medical challenges, I’ve noticed aspects within our community that often go overlooked. For instance, there are women who opt for home births with doulas instead of traditional medical routes. This choice can sometimes lead to delays in getting to the hospital, which can have serious consequences. This practice is quite common in my community. Additionally, we also face challenges related to nutrition, particularly in food deserts where access to fresh produce is limited. These conversations are crucial, yet they often take a back seat in discussions.

Janelle King: That’s something we can all push for within the community. You mentioned tracking health after giving birth for up to a year, especially if there were complications during birth. So, if everything was fine post-birth and then an issue arises later, how do you differentiate between a condition related to childbirth versus a separate medical issue?

I hope you’ve enjoyed this snippet of my discussion with Robert Patillo. To hear the entire interview, please click on the link below.

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