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Meetings and Upcoming Events

SPEAK UP Champion™ Training: Implicit and Explicit Racial Bias Education

A Black woman is 3 to 4 times more likely to die of pregnancy-related complications than a white woman. Research shows that inequities in outcomes are primarily due to differences in how women are treated within the health care setting based on race (racism). The SPEAK UP Champion™ Implicit and Explicit Racial Bias Education outlines quality improvement strategies to support individuals and groups with dismantling racism, providing quality equitable care, and reducing health disparities.

There has recently been an IMPORTANT UPDATE on the October training -- in lieu of a virtual 2-day course, the course will now be held in-person in Springfield, MA on October 19th as a pre-conference event to the Massachusetts AWHONN annual meeting. If you would like to attend this in-person training, there will be a fee charged at registration to help cover the cost of food (details and registration will be available soon). When you register using this link, make sure to select "Pre-con workshop: SPEAK UP Champions Course" in addition to regular event registration. 

Read the full schedule here.

If you are unable to attend the SPEAK UP Champion Training at the MA AWHONN STATE CONFERENCE 2023, there will be another virtual training in 2024!

October 19, 2023

8:00 AM-5:00 PM

MassMutual Center 1277 Main Street Springfield, MA 01103

  Cost: $99 (includes breakfast and lunch)

SPEAK UP  Ambassador Training December 2023

SPEAK UP AMBASSADOR Course, which can only be attended by those who have completed the Champion course is scheduled on December 1st at 8:30 AM - 2:30 PM ET.


Please share the attached flyer and this registration link:

SPEAK UP Faculty Training September 2023

As a reminder, SPEAK UP Ambassadors who have completed both the SPEAK UP Champion and SPEAK UP Ambassador Implicit and Explicit Bias Education are eligible to apply to become SPEAK UP Faculty.

SPEAK UP Faculty will be able to teach the SPEAK UP Champion course with the support of PQI.

Due to technical issues with the Faculty Application form the submission deadline has been extended to Tuesday, August 29, 2023.

Also, by applicant request the SPEAK UP Faculty course has been moved to Friday, September 22, 2023 at 8:30AM - 12:30PM.


To apply to become SPEAK UP Faculty, applicants must:

  1. Be a current PQI Professional paid member.

  2. Be a current perinatal health clinician and have five years of clinical experience.

  3. Be an RN with a master’s degree (DNP or doctorate preferred, certification desirable), physician (with valid US medical license), social worker, midwife (with valid US license) or public health worker.

  4. Participated in perinatal professional development activities (CNE/CME) within the past three years.

  5. Attend the virtual 4-hour SPEAK UP Faculty Course on Friday, September 22, 2023 at 8:30AM - 12:30PM. The SPEAK UP Faculty Course is FREE for MA applicants.

  6. Submit the SPEAK UP Faculty application by the August 29th deadline.


Applicants must have successfully completed the following education in its entirety within the past three years:

  1. SPEAK UP Champion Implicit and Explicit Racial Bias Education (8 hours)

  2. SPEAK UP Ambassador Implicit and Explicit Racial Bias Education (6 hours)

  3. Viewed PQI’s Birth Equity Webinars

  4. SPEAK UP E-Learning Modules Implicit and Explicit Racial Bias Education

  5. Harvard Implicit Bias (Race IAT) Self-Assessment

To learn more about this opportunity and complete the application visit

Feel free to reach out to with any questions.



MA AWHONN is looking forward to bringing you another great perinatal conference. Meet up with friends, enjoy great food, and have fun. We will have the latest industry vendor support and displays.


The excellent program includes topics of:

  • A Thursday keynote dinner offering a sort of "State of the State" with Kate Walsh, Massachusetts Secretary of Health and Human Services.

  • A Friday keynote breakfast with Dr. Shakira Henderson, AWHONN's 2023 President, as she shares AWHONN updates and the Respectful Maternity Care

  • Importance of Cohesive Nursing and Doula Collaboration w/ Mary McDonough and Shari McBurney

  • OB/Gyn care and the transgender population with Erin Connor (#1 rated presenter from our April 2022 conference)


As well as 2 fabulous interdisciplinary panels...

  •  Maternal Mental Health Panel with moderator Jeanne Watson Driscoll, PhD. RN and panel members Jessie Colbert, Alison Kitson, DSW, LICSW, BCBA, PMH-C, Uruj Kamal Haider, MD, and Nancy Byatt, DO, MS, MBA, DFAPA, FACLP

  • Reproductive Justice Panel with Elizabeth Janiak, ScD, MSc, MA and Meghan Dellorco, MSW, LICSW. We are also adding an RN/APRN who is employed in the family planning / reproductive justice space.

Additionally, we are once again offering a pre-conference workshop on Thursday October 19th from 8a-5p with an in person SPEAK UP Champions course, generously sponsored by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and The Institute for Perinatal Quality Improvement (PQI). Take advantage of the first in person SPEAK UP course since prior to the Covid pandemic!!


Space is limited, be sure to REGISTER early and save with our early bird registration.

We have contracted with the MGM Springfield for hotel space. We have rates for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday for those who would like to make this a weekend getaway. Hotel Reservations can be made using the following link.

October 19-20, 2023

8:00 AM-5:00 PM

MassMutual Center 1277 Main Street Springfield, MA 01103


The Maternal Health Learning and Innovation Center (MHLIC) will host the 4th annual National Maternal Health Innovation Symposium virtually on August 9 -10, 2023. Attendance is free. Click here to register. 


AIM/NICHQ Quality Improvement Community of Learning

Date:  Cohort 1: 

  • January 31st 1-3pm EST

  • Febuary 21st 1-3pm EST

  • April 3rd 2-4pm EST

  • May 1st 2-4pm EST 



Location: Virtual via Zoom

Cost: There is no cost for this event.

Intended Audience: states and teams currently involved with AIM or interested in working with AIM

The Quality Improvement (QI) Community of Learning (COL) is a learning series to develop foundational knowledge and skills for professionals engaged with Perinatal Quality Collaboratives and other state-or hospital-based QI teams who are new to QI. The 2023 QI COL will run twice (beginning in January and May) and will provide participants with the opportunity to apply QI principles to their existing projects. Including topics on QI foundations, using the PDSA cycle, using and collecting data for learning and improvement and sustaining improvement.

Cohort 2: 

  • May 25th 2-4pm EST

  • June 12th 2-4pm EST

  • July 10th 2-4pm EST

  • August 21st 2-4pm EST

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AIM Obstetric Emergency Readiness Community of Learning Sessions

To aid in the implementation of the Obstetric Emergency Readiness Resource Kit (anticipated release early May) AIM will be hosting learning sessions. All events are hosted on Zoom and free of charge.

Responding to Hypertensive Obstetric Emergencies in Non-obstetric Settings

Date: June 13, 2023 from 1-2pm ET

Register here

Safe Transfer: Key Considerations and Best Practices

Date: June 28, 2023 from 2-3pm ET

Register here

Debriefing and Learning After Drills and Simulations

Date: July 12, 2023 from 2-3pm ET

Register here

Safe Transfer: Debriefs and Systems Improvement After an Obstetric Emergency

Date: August 3, 2023 from 2-3pm ET

Register here

AIM Technical Assistance Presentation Webinars

Respectful Care Education for Providers: Options for How to Start Making Progress

Renée Byfield MS, RN, FNP, C-EFM, Debra Bingham DrPH, RN, FAAN, & Amy Ushry MPH, BSN, RN, CCM will discuss some options available to start the conversation and provide respectful, equitable, supportive care education to healthcare professionals. Racial health disparities are present in birth outcomes year after year. Racial inequities in care are harmful to patients; but what can health care professionals do to help eliminate these disparities? 

Date: June 15, 2023 from 3-4pm ET 

Location: Zoom

Cost: There is no cost for this event


How to Develop Policy to Sustain Quality Improvement Initiatives

Presented by The Reilly Group -- Whether you are curious, brand new to policy or considered an expert, we will explore how to develop policy using the PACE™ program, who the diverse range of stakeholders involved in policy making are, and how to leverage policy to overcome barriers in your organization. Join us to learn more about the positive impact of policy!

Date: July 20th, 2023 from 3-4pm ET 

Location: Zoom

Cost: There is no cost for this event

Count the Kicks Campaign

We are excited to announce that the DPH Bureau of Family Health and Nutrition has partnered with Healthy Birth Day, Inc. to launch the Count the Kicks campaign! This awareness campaign aims to help expecting parents track their baby’s kicks and fetal movements as a strategy for preventing stillbirth. Through the campaign, our goal is to reduce the Massachusetts stillbirth rate by 32%, which would save 91 babies each year across the state.‬  


We invite all health professionals especially those working closely with expecting parents, to join us in our upcoming webinar to learn more about the Count the Kicks campaign:  

  • How to have conversations with expectant parents about tracking fetal movements 

  • How to use the Count the Kicks app and free resources available to them 

  • What to say or do if an expectant parent notices they are experiencing reduced fetal movement 

  • The powerful stories of what happens when expectant parents learn to kick count and how they can use that knowledge to help protect their baby   

Date: June 22, 2023 from 12-1pm ET 

Location: Zoom

Cost: There is no cost for this event

PNQIN Maternal Equity Bundle Monthly Webinar Series

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Remaining Dates: 

June 20th, 2023; July 18th, 2023; August 15th, 2023;

September 19th, 2023

Location: Virtual via Zoom

Cost: There is no cost for this event.

Register for the series HERE!


The Equity Bundle Monthly Webinar Series will occur on the 3rd Tuesdays of the month from 12:00-1:00pm ET. Join us to hear presentations from PNQIN and guest speakers about the bundle measures, equity tools and best practices, and watch the evolution of participating hospital aggregate data! 

**Please email Kali Vitek at for the access password to recorded webinars!**

Become SPEAK UP Faculty!

Learn more and apply HERE by July 10th!

If you have completed the Champion and Ambassador courses, applying to become SPEAK UP Faculty is the next step on your SPEAK UP journey. See the Become SPEAK UP Faculty Poster that includes the pre-application screening and prerequisites checklist. PQI developed a train-the-trainer approach to prepare a cohort of SPEAK UP Faculty to spread the program. This is an opportunity for SPEAK UP Faculty to host their own SPEAK UP course.


Accompany Doula Care: Request for Partnerships for 2023/2024

Accompany Doula Care, now five years in delivering services in MA, is launching Request for Partnerships for 2023/2024. Accompany seeks responses from clinics, hospitals, payers, and other healthcare organizations to become a partner in 2024. 

Accompany has a proven track record and values delivering high-quality services, centering family preferences for that support, and professional development and support for community doulas. Ahead of the rollout of the MassHealth doula benefit in late 2023, they want to share how our model can complement the expanded coverage of doulas and the comprehensive and high-quality support that we can provide to birthing families. This RFP is a way to field interest from like-minded organizations who want to commit to a sustainable vision. 


The deadline for the RFP is August 18, 2023 at 5 PM.


Please feel free to ask any questions in regard to the RFP by emailing Christina Gebel, at The RFP document can be found here.

 MassHealth Doula Services Program Listening Session

Date:  July 13th, 2023 from 9-10am ET

Location: Virtual via Zoom

No cost

Online listening session related to the MassHealth forthcoming doula services program anticipated to launch later this year. MassHealth will share important updates and information, and also gather feedback and comments from participants!

The Next Step: Integrating Midwives, Doulas and Community-Based Care


Partnering with Doulas
Date: August 30, 2023 3-4:30pm EST 

Community Birth - Improving Transfer of Care

Date: October 25, 2023 3-4:30pm EST 

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This four part webinar series hosted by CMQCC to improve labor management and decrease low-risk, first-time birth (NTSV) cesarean rates. While progress was previously made in lowering these rates, they remain alarmingly high and racial-ethnic disparities in maternal morbidity and mortality persist, most severely with Black moms and birthing people. This webinar series discusses doctors, doulas, midwives, and the potential for team-based care - a key tool in the quality improvement toolbox.   

Join the SAFEST Choice Learning Collaborative

If you would like more information on how your clinic can be part of the SAFEST Choice Learning Collaborative, email

Alcohol use during pregnancy is the leading preventable cause of birth defects and neurodevelopmental problems in the U.S. The SAFEST Choice Learning Collaborative, a partnership between Boston Medical Center and Proof Alliance, aims to reduce prenatal alcohol exposure and improve outcomes in children with a suspected or diagnosed FASD. Since 2021, we have trained approximately 40 clinics from 9 states using virtual education to engage healthcare teams in the Northeast and the Upper Midwest. 


See the attached flyer for participation details. Costs of participation are covered through a cooperative agreement with the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). 

Vermont AWHONN Conference: "Becoming Better Together: Navigating Inequities in Perinatal Care"

Date:  October 4th, 2023 from 8:00am-5:00pm ET

Location: Davis Auditorium, University of Vermont Medical Center

Cost: See registration link

PNQIN MA SPEAK UP Equity Webinar Series


The four birth equity goals include: 

  1. By (date), (site) will form an equity committee that will create and publicly release an anti-racism statement that includes the four A’s (acknowledge, analyze, action, accountability) to ensure racial equity in maternal health. 
  2. By (date), (site) will use race/ethnicity in data review to ensure racial equity in maternal health; specifically confirm race and ethnicity is accurately captured in medical records, review all L&D data (unit initiative data) stratifying by race/ethnicity, and create process to capture if race/ethnicity contributed to SMM during case review.

  3. By (date), (site) will implement tools to apply a racial equity lens to debrief OB emergencies with teams and families. 

  4. By (date), (site) will ensure that maternal care standards are met from a racial birth equity perspective.

The Institute of Perinatal Quality Improvement (PQI) SPEAK UP Against Racial Bias Program is partnering with Massachusetts (MA) Department of Public Health and Perinatal Neonatal Quality Improvement Network of MA (PNQIN) to support MA perinatal facilities to accomplish birth equity focused goals aimed at providing high quality, respectful and equitable care to all birthing people.


The strategy includes four PNQIN MA SPEAK UP Equity Webinars. Each facility will be supported to use a quality improvement approach to accomplish at least one of the four birth equity focused goals. Leaders from participating facilities will receive webinar education, birth equity support, and peer-to-peer collaboration. These perinatal hospital and organizational leaders can also sign-up to receive technical support coaching sessions with health equity experts. 

Webinar #1 (Jan 2022): Creating Anti-Racism Statements for Perinatal Facilities

Click HERE to access webinar archive.

​​​Webinar #2 (Feb 2022): Improving Data Collection and Review Process by Race/Ethnicity

Click HERE to access webinar archive.


Webinar #3 (April 2022): Performing Team and Family Debriefs from a Racial/Equity Lens

Click HERE to access webinar archive.

Webinar #4 (May 2022): Ensuring Maternal Care Standards are Met for Birth Equity

Click HERE to access webinar archive.

Past Events

Please bear with us as we update this section with links to event recordings and/or slides. 

If no materials or information links are available, feel free to email and we will find what we can for you!

Universal Naloxone: A Toolkit for your Hospital 

Janet Perkins MD, Jay Naliboff MD, Jessica Bacon CNM, and Nell Tharpe MS, CNM, FACNM ​present the successes and challenges facility teams have had in implementing a Universal Naloxone toolkit. An important and pressing issue given that substance use is a significant risk factor for pregnancy-associated deaths in the United States. Pregnancy offers a unique time to identify and help patients with substance use disorder. 

Date: May 18th, 2023 from 3-4pm EST

Location: Zoom

Cost: There is no cost for this event

PNQIN 2023 Spring Summit (April 12th, 2023)

Click here to access speaker slide decks, resources and information about how to claim CME, CNE, Social Work and Opioid Education credits.

AIM Perinatal Mental Health Conditions Patient Safety Bundle Implementation Webinar (February 13th, 2023)

Click here to view the recording and access the Perinatal Mental Health Conditions Patient Safety Bundle webpage here


March of Dimes Vaccine Campaign: Stakeholder Briefing (December 13th, 2022)

Millions of babies and children are behind on their immunizations. March of Dimes is leaning efforts to close the vaccine gap and in doing so hold virtual Stakeholder Briefings to share more information and next steps.  Click here to view the recording


PICCK Fall Webinar Series (Fall 2022)

Webinar #1: Tools for Patient-Centered Contraceptive Counseling - Click here to view the recording 

Webinar #2: The Pill Talk - Click here to view the recording

Webinar #3: Self-Managed Medication Abortions - Click here to view the recording

Webinar #4: Public Health vs Private Lives: A Patient-Centered Approach to Contraceptive Care - recording to come

PNQIN Perinatal COVID-19 Vaccine Initiative Wrap-Up Webinar (September 13th, 2022)

We were so excited to share the successes and challenges of our year-long COVID-19 perinatal vaccination initiative with our PNQIN network. We reviewed the initiative goals, heard a MDPH update on pregnancy COVID data, summarized our activities, presented our existing resources, and answered questions. 

Click the following link to view the webinar recording!

PNQIN Maternal Initiatives Update (May 17th, 2022)

PNQIN is thrilled to formally share updates on our many maternal initiatives with our hospital teams and partners for the first time since June 2020! In this packed 2-hour event, we had our project leads describe the current state of AIM bundles (Opioid Use Disorder in Pregnancy, Obstetric Hemorrhage, Severe Hypertension, and Equity), Levels of Maternal Care, and Perinatal COVID-19 Vaccination. 

The Zoom recording and presentation slides are available on a password-protected page on our website. Please email Kali Vitek at for the access password!



PNQIN Perinatal COVID-19 Vaccine Initiative Kickoff (October 12th, 2021)

PNQIN has received additional CDC funding to engage hospitals, stakeholders, and educational platforms to improve provider capacity, protocol implementation and clinical-community care linkages for equitable delivery of Covid-19 vaccines to pregnant and postpartum people. 

Click the links to view the webinar recording and PDF of the presentation slides!

MA Levels of Maternal Care Webinar #3 (October 12th, 2021)

This third and final webinar for the MA Levels of Maternal Care Initiative will review statewide LOCATe survey and Equity results and offer the opportunity for participating hospitals to ask questions about their survey responses and individual level designations. 

Click here to view the webinar recording; a PDF of the presentation slides will be available soon!


  1. Review statewide LOCATe and Equity results with participating hospitals.

  2. Provide an opportunity for participating hospitals to ask questions and engage in discussion about survey results, upcoming individualized reports, and the future of LoMC in Massachusetts.

  3. Share PNQIN's next steps for LoMC and offer follow-up conversation/coaching after final report distribution.

PNQIN Perinatal Opioid Project, Spring 2021 Summit: Improving Care of Perinatal Opioid Use

June 15th & 16th, 2021

Visit the PNQIN website HERE to view the event details, including session recordings, presentation slides, and resources from our speakers and hospital teams.


Birth Experiences During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Virtual Town Hall (June 3rd, 2021)

In collaboration with the MA COVID-19 Maternal Equity Coalition and the Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety, we are pleased to announce a virtual town hall featuring several speakers with lived experience giving birth during COVID-19. 

Promoting Quality and Equity to Make Birth Safer for All: A PQC Story (June 3rd, 2021)

Part of the PICCK Spring 2021 webinar series!

Presented by Audra Meadows, MD, MPH. Rising rates of severe maternal morbidity and maternal mortality in the US are alarming. Stark racial disparities exist and persist. In partnership with clinical providers, public health professionals, and families, the perinatal quality collaborative (PQC) for Massachusetts is working to eliminate preventable maternal morbidity/mortality and the racial difference. PQCs are uniquely positioned to promote data-driven, quality improvement through an equity lens to make birth safer for all.

Massachusetts AIM OB Hemorrhage Bundle Kickoff (May 11th, 2021)

This event feature PNQIN updates and a Call to Action around obstetric hemorrhage, an AIM Hospital Champion story, and participation logistics for AIM OB Hemorrhage bundle implementation starting in June 2021.


The Zoom recording and presentation slides are available on a password-protected page on our website. Please email Kali Vitek at for the access password!

PQI Champions Free Webinar featuring Dr. Audra Meadows (April 8th, 2021)

This is a FREE PQI Champions Webinar: QI Lessons from Implementing Group Prenatal Care from Audra Meadows, MD, MPH, our PNQIN Co-Chair.  Dr. Meadows is a birth optimizer and cares for people before, during, and after pregnancy to ensure positive pregnancy and birth experiences. She teaches medical students, residents, and fellows and devotes time to prenatal care practice innovation and advocacy.

Visit the PQI website to view the recording!

PNQIN Levels of Maternal Care: Informational Webinar #2 (March 2nd, 2021)

This is the second of three webinars that reviewed the LOCATe tool and featured a Q&A panel to help answer questions about survey completion. ​You can also visit the PNQIN Levels of Maternal Care webpage for more information.

Click the following links to view the webinar recording and presentation slides.

PNQIN Levels of Maternal Care: Informational Webinar #1 (February 9th, 2021)

PNQIN is leading an initiative to implement the CDC Levels of Maternal Care in Massachusetts. This involves the use of the CDC Levels of Care Assessment Tool (LOCATe). Your hospitals will receive additional information about this initiative via email in the following days. This is the first of three webinars that explained the Levels of Maternal Care initiative and use of the LOCATe tool. ​


Click the following links to view the webinar recording and presentation slides

COVID-19 Response Updates

Due to the recent university and health system policies regarding COVID-19, we have decided to cancel the summit previously scheduled for April 8, 2020, 8:30 am-12:30 pm. The health of our attendees, speakers, staff, and the general public is our priority.

PNQIN Perinatal Opioid Project (POP) Spring 2020 Summit 

In accordance with state and federal recommendations, to help protect the health of our community and our patients, the PNQIN Perinatal Opioid Project summit scheduled for May 13, 2020 is CANCELLED. Click HERE for more information.

PNQIN MPQC and the Betsy Lehman Center for Patient Safety for  COVID-19 and Pregnancy in Massachusetts: A Virtual Town Hall  

Tuesdays at 12pm ET, April-June 2020. Click HERE to view the Town Hall Archives.

Click HERE for more information and for COVID-19 Resources​​​​​​​

MPQC Spring 2020 Summit 

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