New legislation would establish a coordinated approach between two federal organizations to combine efforts in tackling the maternal mortality crisis
U.S. mothers are dying at higher rates than other high-income countries
In GA, the maternal death rate for Black women is twice more than white women and 6 times the rate compared to white women nationally
Senator Reverend Warnock: “We must all work together if we’re going to solve the nation’s maternal health crisis, and Democrats and Republicans agree that helping ensure mothers and babies are healthy and whole keeps our families strong and helps our communities thrive”
Senator Warnock previously introduced the Kira Johnson Act and the Maternal Health Quality Improvement Act to address the nation’s maternal health crisis
Washington, D.C. — Today,U.S. Senators Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced the Improving Coordination for Healthy Moms Act, legislation to strengthen the federal government’s efforts to improve maternal health outcomes across the nation. The new legislation would direct the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to combine and coordinate efforts between two existing federal entities, the Department’s “Healthy People Maternal, Infant, and Child Health Workgroup” and it’s “Maternal Health Working Group,” to obtain more efficient data and optimize the federal government’s resources across the working groups to more efficiently address the nation’s maternal health crisis.
“We must all work together if we’re going to solve the nation’s maternal health crisis, and Democrats and Republicans agree that helping ensure mothers and babies are healthy and whole keeps our families strong and helps our communities thrive,” Senator Reverend Warnock said. “I’m proud to introduce this bill with Senator Rubio that will help the federal government streamline efforts to improve maternal health outcomes across our country. No woman should fear losing her life from pregnancy or childbirth.
“It’s time for the United States to address the alarming rates of maternal mortality and morbidity impacting the diverse communities across our nation,” Senator Rubio said. “This is a common sense bill that will streamline federal efforts to improve maternal and infant health, and I will work to make sure it becomes law.”
In April 2021, U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on maternal mortality in rural and underserved areas. They found the two federal entities, “Healthy People Maternal, Infant, and Child Health Workgroup” and the “Maternal Health Working Group”, have similar goals and recommended a formal coordination to eliminate duplication and get more efficient data to address the maternal health crisis. The new legislation improves governmental efficiency in addressing the rising maternal mortality across the country.
According to the Center for Reproductive Rights, Georgia has the worst maternal mortality ratio of any state in the country. These figures are even higher for Black women in Georgia who are 6 times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications than white women. Senator Warnock has been a vocal advocate for improving maternal health outcomes and has previously championed legislation to address the maternal mortality crisis in the country. In September, Senators Warnock and Padilla (D-CA) discussed the maternal health crisis and how Congress can best support mothers and mothers-to-be through federal policy.
Read the full bill text here.