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The BLACK Doula Network (BDN) is a social enterprise designed to address the doula provider deficit, build the missing backbone infrastructure needed to support and sustain doulas, and provide birthing persons with access to healthcare services demonstrated to decrease health disparities.

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Fresno is facing a Black maternal and child health and a healthcare infrastructure crisis. Black women in Fresno experience preterm birth at a rate of 13.5%, whereas this rate among white women is 9%. Black women are six times more likely to die from a preventable pregnancy related cause compared to white women. Black babies die at more than three times the rate of white babies. Black women in Fresno are more likely to live in unfinished neighborhoods and experience higher rates of comorbidities. Increased access to doulas may result in positive birthing experiences, more full-term pregnancies, and healthier babies.


​Reimbursement of doula services forMedi-Cal patients: California recently passed legislation (SB 65 Momnibus), a game-changer in transforming birth outcomes for Black communities, as it provides reimbursement of doula services for Medi-Cal patients. ​Starting on 1/1/2023, Medi-Cal covers full spectrum doula care, as preventive services. Doula services are aimed at preventing perinatal complications and improving health outcomes for birthing parents and infants. Doulas serving Medi-Cal beneficiaries provide person-centered, culturally competent care that supports the racial, ethnic, linguistic, and cultural diversity of beneficiaries while adhering to evidence-based best practices.


The BLACK Doula Network is a multi-faceted approach, which includes: - Development of a high-quality, equity-centered, doula training curriculum - A plan to integrate trained doulas into the hospital and healthcare system to ensure continuum of care - An administrative backbone network, that will function similar to an Independent Provider Association (IPA), ensuring that doulas have the legal and administrative support they need. As a flagship initiative for race equity, the Network will lead to system changes and serve as a model for measurable outcomes and effective public policies.

Read our report "Doula Perspectives - a Community-based Doula Listening Session' here


Doula support can make a significant difference in your pregnancy and birth experience! Women, especially Black women with culturally appropriate doula support:

  • Experience lower rates of unnecessary C-sections

  • Deliver healthier newborns

  • Experience lower rates of postpartum depression

  • Are more likely to receive recommended postpartum care from their provider

  • Experience lower rates of delivering preterm. 

  • Initiate breastfeeding at higher rates and breastfeed their babies longer

Read about the BDN Doula Scope of Practice here

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Explore more about the benefits of having a doula backed by science here 


BDN equips doula candidates with the skills and knowledge to:

  • Provide equitable, high-quality, and ethical pregnancy and postpartum care

  • Develop a positive and collaborative relationship with other members of the care team

  • Use evidence-based sources to further their knowledge

  • Recognize opportunities for decreasing gaps created by social and economic factors

  • Deliver culturally respectful and patient-centered care

  • Serve Medi-Cal patients as a Medi-Cal Doula Providers 

Our Doulas are: 

  • Certified and/or trained through the BLACK Doula Network

  • CPR and first-aid certified

  • Have liability insurance

  • HIPAA certified

Coming soon!

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BDN trained and certified doulas are exposed to:

  • Racial justice & birth justice concepts

  • Public health data disaggregated by race/ethnicity and how it relates to birthing persons in the Central Valley 

  • Evidence-informed care approaches

  • Community-informed care plans

  • Hospital structure, policies and procedures

  • Human anatomy related to reproductive health 

Learn more about the BLACK Doula Training here

For providers


Match Me With a Doula


Doula services are provided for those who are pregnant or were pregnant in the last year. Doula services are prioritized by local infant and maternal health disparities based on race and ethnicity.  Currently, the Black/African American and AIAN are the most impacted communities.


There may be a waiting list for those who we cannot support immediately. Thank you for your understanding.


Connect your Patient with a Doula



DHCS issued a statewide standing recommendation that all Medi-Cal members who are pregnant or were pregnant within the past year would benefit from receiving doula services from a Medi-Cal enrolled doula provider.

GREAT NEWS! This means, no provider recommendation is needed. All you have to do is connect your patients with us! Our goal is to develop a positive and collaborative relationship with all members of the care team.


Click the button below to connect us with your patient.

For Birthing Persons


Become a BDN Member!

Transform birth outcomes with us.

THE BLACK DOULA NETWORK MEMBERSHIP IS OPEN! Apply now and become a certified member of the

BLACK Doula Network.

Benefits of joining include: 

  • Administrative and billing support

  • Healthcare systems and health plans access

  • Access to mentorship and professional development opportunities

  • Access to public health-informed, culturally affirming client resources

  • Professional community

  • Workspace for client appointments

  • Access to special events and client support provided by BWPC clinical and non-clinical partners

Step 1: Review the "BDN Certification & Membership Application Checklist and Guide"

Step 2: Download and review the "BDN Certification & Membership Application Package for External Doulas 2024 ZIP Folder"
Step 3: Submit the completed the online application form (link below)

Step 4: Wait to hear back

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