Senators Reverend Raphael Warnock and Shelley Moore Capito introduced the Preventing Maternal Deaths Reauthorization Act of 2023
This bipartisan legislation would reauthorize programs to preserve maternal health throughout pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum and would address disparities in maternal health outcomes through data collection, analysis, and strategies for prevention
A recent Georgia study funded through the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2018 found maternal mortality rates are increasing in Georgia, and 89% of deaths are preventable
Senator Reverend Warnock: “Reauthorizing these data collection programs is an important piece of the puzzle, but we have much more work to do end this crisis, including funding bias training programs in health care systems and expanding Medicaid in all hold out states”
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) introduced the Preventing Maternal Deaths Reauthorization Act of 2023. This bipartisan legislation would support states in preserving maternal health throughout pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum, addressing disparities in maternal health outcomes and finding solutions to enhance health care quality and outcomes for mothers. A recent Georgia study found maternal mortality rates are increasing in Georgia, and 89% of deaths are preventable—this study was funded through the Preventing Maternal Deaths of 2018.
“My home state of Georgia recently released a study finding 89% of maternal deaths over a recent three-year period were preventable,” said Senator Reverend Warnock. “This critical data collection and analysis was possible because of the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act. That’s why I’m proud to partner with Senator Capito to reauthorize these programs to collect and analyze data and establish strategies for prevention. The most tender moments of one’s life shouldn’t also be the most painful—the United States has the highest maternal mortality rate among wealthy countries, and Georgia has nearly twice the national maternal mortality rate. Reauthorizing these data collection programs is an important piece of the puzzle, but we have much more work to do end this crisis, including funding bias training programs in health care systems and expanding Medicaid in all hold out states.”
“I was proud to work with colleagues in both chambers of Congress to pass the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2018, which established this framework to reduce preventable deaths and to work towards every mom having a safe and healthy pregnancy,” said Senator Capito. “The bipartisan legislation we are introducing today will continue these efforts and both identify and provide best practices to help address our nation’s maternal mortality crisis. Programs that support our mothers and young families are essential to the health and well-being of our nation, and I will continue to put solutions forward that provide the support they need.”
Senator Reverend Warnock has been a steadfast champion of combatting maternal mortality, including introducing the Kira Johnson Act to support bias training and data collection. The Senator also partnered with Senator Rubio to pass into law the Maternal Health Quality Improvement Act which authorized new grant programs to reduce maternal mortality and improve implicit bias training for providers. Additionally, the Senator continues to be a strong advocate for closing the Medicaid coverage gap in Georgia, so that more than 640,000 Georgians can access affordable health care. Expanding Medicaid would improve the maternal mortality rate, especially for Black women according to the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute Center for Children and Families.
The legislation was also introduced by Senators Roger Marshall (R-KS), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Thom Tillis (R-NC), and Tina Smith (D-MN). Companion legislation was also introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Representatives Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (R-TX) and Diana DeGette (D-CO).
Full text of the legislation is available here.