Complications from pregnancy can happen over the course of pregnancy, during delivery, and up to one year after the end of pregnancy. These complications, which include cardiovascular conditions such as cardiomyopathy; hypertensive emergencies such as preeclampsia, eclampsia, and stroke; and conditions related to mental health such as suicide and overdose, can be life-threatening. Patients who develop signs or symptoms of serious pregnancy-related complications and conditions may seek emergency care in nonobstetric settings including EMS/911, hospital-based emergency departments, standalone emergency rooms, or urgent care facilities.
State maternal mortality review committees, which gather detailed information to better understand the drivers of maternal deaths, have reported missed opportunities to identify pregnancy-related emergencies in non obstetric settings. In response, ACOG and CDC* launched a multiyear initiative to address these findings. They have worked with specialty organizations and subject matter experts who play an integral role in training and educating clinicians in these settings to develop tools and resources to help practitioners identify and manage these pregnancy-related emergencies.