The Hear Her Campaign Empowers Pregnant and Postpartum Women


Tragically, approximately 700 women die each year in the United States as a result of pregnancy-related complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). There are also significant racial and ethnic disparities in pregnancy-related complications and deaths. Native American, Alaska Native, and Black women are two to three times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related complication than white women.

Now, CDC is launching the initial phase of Hear Her, a national communication campaign that brings attention to maternal mortality and provides support to pregnant and postpartum women to speak up when something does not feel right. This campaign is supported through a partnership with the CDC Foundation and funding from Merck through its Merck for Mothers program.

The Hear Her campaign features compelling personal stories from women who have experienced severe pregnancy-related complications. Seeking to raise awareness of potentially life-threatening warning signs, it is designed to empower pregnant and postpartum women to speak up and encourages partners, friends, family and healthcare providers to really listen and take action when women express concerns. Starting in August, campaign advertisements will begin running on a variety of channels across the nation including diverse digital platforms, social media and broadcast and radio PSA placements.

Maternal health is a complex public health issue that requires a multifaceted solution. We believe there is no acceptable rate of maternal mortality, and it is our hope that this campaign serves as one part of the solution to making maternal mortality a challenge of the past. We are grateful to Merck for Mothers for their support of this campaign.

We all have a role to play in preventing pregnancy-related deaths. If you are pregnant or were pregnant within the last year and feel that something is wrong, talk to your doctor. If you are experiencing an urgent maternal warning sign, get medical care right away. Continue to share your concerns until you are heard, and your questions are answered.

Visit the Hear Her campaign website at for more information.

Claire Stinson is a communications officer for the CDC Foundation.
Emily Bucherati is a senior communication officer for the CDC Foundation.