Why are Black mothers and infants dying at a greater rate in Indiana?

Hear from Maternal-Fetal Medicine Expert Dr. Lauren Dungy-Poythress

Thursday, June 15, 2023, 11:30 a.m.—1:30 p.m.
University of Saint Francis | North Campus Auditorium | 2702 Spring St., Fort Wayne, IN 46808

Infant mortality rates in Fort Wayne are among the highest in the state and the country, and maternal health disparities are equally alarming. The United States has one of the highest rates of maternal mortality among other developed countries. Black women are 3-4 times more likely to die during or within one year of the end of pregnancy. For Black women in Indiana, the maternal mortality rate is 93% higher than the rate for white women. What’s going on?

Join us for a presentation on implicit bias from Dr. Lauren Dungy-Poythress, Associate Professor of Clinical Obstetrics & Gynecology at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health. Lauren Dungy-Poythress, MD, an accomplished board certified physician specializing in Maternal-Fetal Medicine and educator, brings to her patients and their physicians more than 25 years of perinatology experience. She has designed, developed, and led successful Maternal-Fetal Medicine offices and/or programs in three states.

She is the daughter of two educators, Dr. Wilbur Dungy (a Tuskegee Airman), who began teaching at Jackson College in 1953 as the college’s first African-American professor and Mrs. Cleomae Dungy, an educator with the Michigan Public Schools for more than 30 years. She earned her medical degree from The University of Michigan’s Medical School. This was followed by residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology in Ann Arbor, Michigan and subspecialty training in Maternal-Fetal Medicine at the University of Cincinnati.

Dr. Dungy-Poythress has held faculty appointments as associate and assistant professor at several university medical programs, and serves, or has served, on many community boards and programs some of which include, the Women’s Fund Advisory Board, The State Board of Directors for the March of Dimes, The Indiana Perinatal Network, The Julian Center Board of Directors, and Officer and Board of Directors for the Dungy Family Foundation, Inc. She has been honored with many awards, including The International Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Leading Physicians of the World Award, Faith and Family Integrity Award, National Coalition of 100 Black Women Breakthrough Award, Indiana Business Journal Women of Influence Award, Center for Leadership Development Achievement in Professions Award, Touch Stone Awards “Lighting the Way Empowering Tomorrow’s Champions” Girls Inc. Award, Excellence in the Field of Medicine Award, Top Docs Indianapolis, U.S. News Top Doctors, and Castle Connolly Top Doctor in the field of Maternal-Fetal Medicine.

Dr. Dungy-Poythress enjoys opportunities for lectures and motivational speaking. Such engagements have included keynote addresses, lectures and panel discussions for non-profits, Fortune 500 companies, schools (public and private), colleges and universities. She has been featured in many media commercials and teaching campaigns. Throughout her distinguished career, she has received many honors, some of which include a key to the city from the mayor of Jackson, Michigan; distinguished university and college commencement speaker honors; invited leadership speaking engagements, honorary doctorates; and special citations from the Governor of Michigan, the Michigan House of Representatives and the U.S. House of Representatives.

Dr. Dungy-Poythress has presented lectures at numerous conferences and medical schools, has been published in various medical journals, presented at national forums, made numerous television appearances, and received research and teaching awards. She has a special interest in equity, inclusion, and disparities in healthcare.

In addition to better understanding implicit bias, Dr. Dungy-Poythress will help shed light on the real impact it’s having on women’s lives, what patients and healthcare providers can do better, and how we can all move closer to the goal of justice in healthcare and health outcomes.

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