Season 1, Episode 7: Better Health for Mom and Baby
Researchers, insurers, and health care experts continue to try to tackle improving maternal health care — and by extension, the health of children.
In this episode, we hear from Dr. Johanna Vidal-Phelan, senior medical director, pediatrics at UPMC Health Plan, where she manages children’s services in the Children’s Health Insurance Program, among other initiatives. We also hear from Katie Domalakes, a licensed social worker and director of clinical programs at UPMC Health Plan who focuses on population health efforts for maternal, child, and special needs populations.
Host Ellen Beckjord also speaks with Congresswoman Robin Kelly, an Illinois Democrat, who is advocating for measures to extend Medicaid coverage to women for up to one year after they give birth.
The views and opinions expressed by the participants of this podcast are not necessarily those of UPMC Health Plan, Inc. or its affiliates.
Dr. Ellen Beckjord, MPH, is host of the Good Health, Better World podcast.
Ellen is a behavioral scientist, epidemiologist, and licensed clinical psychologist working at the intersection of population and digital health. A long-time member of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, Ellen currently serves on the board of directors as president-elect.
Her work focuses on promoting health, wellness, and health behavior change. She is vice president of population health and clinical optimization for UPMC Health Plan based in Pittsburgh.
Ellen trained at the University of Vermont, where she worked with cancer survivors and their families, at Vanderbilt University, and at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
She completed post-doctoral research at the National Cancer Institute in the Health Communication and Informatics Research Branch within the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. She spent nearly five years in academic medicine at the University of Pittsburgh and Hillman Cancer Center.
Ellen also is the co-author of “Porchtraits” in which she interviewed people in Pittsburgh during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic about what they were learning, missing, enjoying, what surprised them, and what they felt hopeful about.
Ellen’s guiding principle: “Lead with love.”
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