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Intimate partner violence (IPV) is the third leading risk factor for maternal mortality in Philadelphia. Philadelphia’s MMRC identified 23 maternal deaths from homicide or suicide from 2010-2019, with 22% of the deaths occurring during pregnancy and 78% in the postpartum period. Black women made up about 78% of homicide/suicide deaths, although they only account for 43% of total births in Philadelphia.

Recognizing the need to address maternal mortality due to violence in Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health (PDPH) Division of Maternal Child and Family Health (MCFH) and the Office of Domestic Violence Strategies (ODVS) applied for a 5-year grant from the Office of Women’s Health to address maternal mortality (MM) due to violence either from homicide or suicide. The project, Transforming Philadelphia’s Response to IPV and Sexual Violence in Obstetric Settings, is-lead by MCFH and ODVS and seeks to increase data collection on IPV and sexual violence in the maternal mortality review process, increase delivery hospital and emergency room capacity to identify and respond to IPV and sexual violence by implementing best practices for IPV training and screening, and develop a warm hand-off referral system to local IPV agencies.

A key strategy in this grant is the creation of a cross-sector “IPV Implementation Team.” The IPV Implementation Team provides strategic input and support to oversee grant activities and participation based on landscape analysis and stakeholder interviews. The IPV Implementation Team comprises stakeholders from domestic violence and sexual assault agencies, government agencies, hospitals, lived-experience experts (birthing people who were pregnant while living in Philadelphia over the past five years and who experienced intimate partner violence during their pregnancy), and researchers.

If you would like to learn more about this taskforce please complete the form below or reach out to

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