‘The Right Solution’: Serena Williams Invests In Black-Owned Start-Up That Helps Mothers Who Are Giving Birth

In a 2018 op-ed piece for CNN, Serena Williams said she nearly died after giving birth to her daughter Olympia, and now she’s invested in a company so other moms won’t have the same experience.

The tennis star said just 24 hours after giving birth, she received blood clots in the arteries of her lungs and suffered shortness of breath. Williams received a lot of other complications too, including “a swelling of clotted blood” in her abdomen, plus, her C-section wound was ruptured due to heavy coughing.

Williams then requested a CT scan, according to what she told Vogue, but was given an ultrasound of her legs instead. She eventually got the CT scan, which showed the many blood clots in her lungs. And now with her investment, the mother of one is helping other moms receive better, more comprehensive care.

It’s been announced that Williams has invested in a black owned startup called Mahmee, which according to its website is a “Management platform that makes it easy for payers, providers, and patients to coordinate comprehensive prenatal and postpartum healthcare from anywhere.”

The company will also help to shrink the disparaging numbers between black women and others delivering, because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that black mothers are three to four times more likely to die from giving birth compared to other racial groups.

The co-founder of Mahmee Melissa Hanna talked about the company and explained why it’s needed.

“We’re so focused on delivering a healthy baby that mom gets side-lined,” she told TechCrunch. “And this industry is lacking the IT infrastructure needed to connect these professionals from different organizations to each other, and to follow and monitor patients across practices and health systems.”

“This missing element creates gaps in care,” added Hanna. “Mahmee is the glue that connects the care ecosystem and closes the gaps.”

Williams said she’s excited to invest in something that will help new moms, as well as their children.

“I am incredibly excited to invest and partner with Mahmee, a company that personifies my firm’s investment philosophy,” she said in a statement, mentioning her company Serena Ventures.

“Given the bleak data surrounding maternal death and injury rates, I believe that it is absolutely critical right now to invest in solutions that help protect the lives of moms and babies,” Williams added. “Mahmee’s data-driven approach is the right solution to one of the most significant problems in the system: that of fragmented care.”

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is also among the early round investors.

“My investment reflects my confidence in the strength of this team, and the value of their mission: to fill a major gap in the existing health care system that very few others are tackling,” he said in a statement. “This tech solution is helping usher in the future of maternity health care.”

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