Pregnancy-related deaths are 3 to 4 times higher for Black mothers than white mothers in the United States. Hispanic, Native American, & AAPI mothers also experience disproportionate mortality and morbidity rates. These stats are devastatingly old news. Pushing forward, Congresswoman Lauren Underwood, Congresswoman Alma Adams, Senator Cory Booker and members of the Black Maternal Health Caucus have introduced the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2021.
The bill includes 12 key components, as summarized by the Black Maternal Health Caucus:
Make critical investments in social determinants of health that influence maternal health outcomes, like housing, transportation, and nutrition.
Provide funding to community-based organizations that are working to improve maternal health outcomes and promote equity.
Comprehensively study the unique maternal health risks facing pregnant and postpartum veterans and support VA maternity care coordination programs.
Grow and diversify the perinatal workforce to ensure that every mom in America receives culturally congruent maternity care and support.
Improve data collection processes and quality measures to better understand the causes of the maternal health crisis in the United States and inform solutions to address it.
Support moms with maternal mental health conditions and substance use disorders.
Improve maternal health care and support for incarcerated moms.
Invest in digital tools like telehealth to improve maternal health outcomes in underserved areas.
Promote innovative payment models to incentivize high-quality maternity care and non-clinical perinatal support.
Invest in federal programs to address the unique risks for and effects of COVID-19 during and after pregnancy and to advance respectful maternity care in future public health emergencies.
Invest in community-based initiatives to reduce levels of and exposure to climate change-related risks for moms and babies.
Promote maternal vaccinations to protect the health and safety of moms and babies.
The Momnibus has support from more than 240 organizations and is co-sponsored by a broad number of Congresspeople and Senators. If you’d like to help support this bill, please
Reach out to your representatives. You can find your Congressperson here and Senators here.
Post to social media. The Black Maternal Health Momnibus has provided a toolkit here with sample posts that you can use.
Follow the Black Maternal Health Caucus on Twitter for updates.