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Recognition for Excellence in Treating Hypertensive Disorders During Pregnancy

Lehigh Valley Health Network awarded for finding innovative ways to care for women

Pregnancy hypertension and kidney care

Affecting roughly 10 percent of women in the United States, hypertensive disorders during pregnancy can lead to complications in both mother and baby, including raising the mother’s risk for lifelong cardiovascular disease. Fortunately, women with such disorders can know they are in capable hands with Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) providers.

“We want the best for both mother and baby, so we have really focused our research on what we can do to improve outcomes for women with hypertensive disorders during pregnancy,” says Meredith Rochon, MD, Chief, Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine.

National recognition for award-winning care 

LVHN’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology (OB-GYN) received the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Hypertension Innovator Award for its submission “Comprehensive Program for Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy.” The submission detailed the innovative ways women with hypertension during pregnancy and postpartum receive appropriate monitoring and follow-up care.

The HHS competition was initially created to illustrate how existing programs that provide care for people with hypertension could be expanded to also treat women who are pregnant or postpartum. Its overarching goal is to improve maternal health and health equity in communities.

For this submission, the team demonstrated evidence-based approaches to screening and treating hypertensive disorders, especially among populations that may experience disparities in care, including racial, ethnic, urban and rural disparities. The award also included a $50,000 stipend to help develop the program.

Grant funding for home-based program

Additionally, the LVHN Department of OBGYN submitted a proposal to the Pennsylvania Medical Society 2021-2022 Innovation Grant, titled “Development of a Remote Patient Monitoring Pilot Program to Improve Cost and Patient Satisfaction for the Management of Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy.”

The grant identifies projects that address health care inequalities while using evidence based practices. LVHN’s proposal was awarded the full $100,000 grant available to develop a home-based care program for pregnant women with hypertensive disorders who otherwise might have needed hospitalization. The program is being implemented over the next few months.

“Lengthy hospitalizations have always been a challenge for our mothers, some of whom are leaving at home other children, significant others, even pets. The visitation restrictions that have occurred as a result of the pandemic have made this issue even more challenging. While maintaining high-quality care and safety for mother and newborn, select patients will now be able to remain in the comfort of their homes,” Rochon says.

More information about pregnancy and hypertension at

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Providers can refer an individual to LVHN Women’s Health program by calling 888-402-LVHN (5846). If you are a patient, call 888-402-LVHN to request an appointment.

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