Identifying Stigmatizing Language in Maternal Mortality Medical Health Records

dc.creatorGi, Ashleyen_US
dc.creatorRaines-Milenkov, Amyen_US
dc.description.abstractIssue: This presentation endeavors to comprehensively address the ever-growing issue of stigmatizing language within medical health records, particularly in regards to maternal mortality. Maternal mortality remains a pressing health concern, with stark disparities persisting among different demographic groups. There is a notable gap in the identification of bias and disparities within medical records, with stigmatizing language being one manifestation of this bias. Stigmatizing language in medical records perpetuates harmful stereotypes, undermines patient trust, exacerbates disparities, and hinders equitable care delivery. This review focuses on the Maternal Mortality Case Preparation process which involves a systematic review of maternal death cases to identify contributing factors in hopes of reducing maternal mortality rates. Setting: The objective is to equip maternal mortality abstractors with the necessary resources to identify and abstract stigmatizing language present in maternal death medical records, fostering a more accurate and unbiased documentation process. Project: Efforts were directed towards refining a specialized tool to primarily assist Maternal Mortality Case abstractors and MMMRC Reviewers in identifying bias and stigmatizing language within medical records. The tool helps abstractors and Reviewers identify instances of discrimination within medical records that may have contributed to maternal death, ensuring a comprehensive approach to mitigating biases and promoting equitable maternal healthcare. Additionally, an accompanying PowerPoint presentation was developed to raise awareness about the harmful impact of stigmatizing language and provide guidance on alternative language usage to promote inclusivity and sensitivity in medical documentation. Results: Through a comprehensive literature review, common forms of stigmatizing language prevalent in medical health records have been identified. These include the use of quotations, which may inadvertently portray certain patient attributes or conditions in a derogatory manner. Moreover, language that utilizes doubt markers and judgemental language indicates a lack of trust or skepticism towards the patient's reported experiences or medical history. Lastly, blaming patients by using disapproving language not only perpetuates negative stereotypes but also undermines patient autonomy and dignity. By recognizing and categorizing these common forms of stigmatizing language, healthcare professionals can become more aware of their inadvertent biases and strive towards promoting more respectful and patient-centered communication within medical documentation. Conclusion: The development and refinement of this tool and educational resource represent significant progress in addressing stigmatizing language within medical health records. By raising awareness on the harmful implications of stigmatizing language, we can work towards improving the quality of care provided and reducing disparities in maternal health outcomes. Furthermore, the lessons learned from this initiative emphasize the broader significance for promoting equity and inclusivity within healthcare systems, underscoring the importance of addressing bias and discrimination in medical documentation across all healthcare specialties. Through continued research, education, and advocacy efforts, we can strive towards a healthcare system that is truly inclusive, equitable, and respectful of all patients' diverse backgrounds and experiences.en_US
dc.titleIdentifying Stigmatizing Language in Maternal Mortality Medical Health Recordsen_US