Task Force on Maternal Health

North Carolina maternal mortality and morbidity data shows that efforts are needed to address the growing number of women of childbearing age across our state who are dying within 42 days of birth and/or as a result of pregnancy related and associated complications. Data also shows that there are opportunities to improve the collection, analysis and application of state-level data to better track and prevent future severe maternal morbidity and improve overall maternal health.

To improve maternal health outcomes in North Carolina, the North Carolina Institute of Medicine (NCIOM) in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services established the Task Force on Maternal Health to bring together stakeholders and experts from across North Carolina to identify evidence-based solutions to best improve maternal health outcomes and to guide and develop a Maternal Health Strategic Plan for the state. 

The Task Force will be building upon the work of the NCIOM Perinatal Systems of Care Task Force and will align with the state’s Perinatal Health Strategic and Early Childhood Action Plans. In addition to the development of a Maternal Health Strategic Plan, an Annual Report, including the Executive Summary, will be published by the NCIOM.

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Task Force Leadership

Task Force Member List


Harraway-Smith Headshot

Carolyn Harraway-Smith, MD, FACOG, DABFM

Chair, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Cone Health Women’s Hospital

Shepperson Headshot

Ste’Keira Shepperson

Owner and Doula

Triangle Doulas of Color

Taormina HeadShot

Velma V. Taormina, MD, MSE

Women's Health Consultant

NC Medicaid

NC Department of Health and Human Services


Project Director


Khristian Curry, MPH

Project Director

North Carolina Institute of Medicine