Skip to content

Does adopting a prenatal substance use protocol reduce racial disparities in CPS reporting related to maternal drug use? A California case study

This study examined whether adopting a standardized prenatal substance use protocol (protocol) in a hospital labor and delivery unit reduced racial disparities in reporting to child protective services (CPS) related to maternal drug use during pregnancy. This study used an interrupted time series design with a non-equivalent control. One hospital adopted a protocol and another hospital group serving a similar geographic population did not change protocols. Data on CPS reporting disparities from these hospitals over 3.5 years were analyzed using segmented regression. In the hospital that adopted the protocol, almost five times more black than white newborns were reported during the study period. Adopting the protocol was not associated with reduced disparities. Adopting a protocol cannot be assumed to reduce CPS reporting disparities. Efforts to encourage hospitals to adopt protocols as a strategy to reduce disparities may be misguided. Other strategies to reduce disparities are needed.

Authors: Roberts SC; Zahnd E; Sufrin C; Armstrong MA

J Perinatol. 2015 Feb;35(2):146-50. Epub 2014-09-18.

PubMed abstract

Explore all studies and publications

Back To Top