Judith M. Orvos, ELS, is an editorial consultant for Contemporary OB/GYN.
“Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020” is led by Senator Kamala D. Harris (D-CA) and Representatives Lauren Underwood (IL-14) and Alma Adams (NC-12).
A package of nine individual bills has just been introduced that aim to improve health for black mothers in the United States. “Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020”1 is led by Senator Kamala D. Harris (D-CA) and Representatives Lauren Underwood (IL-14) and Alma Adams (NC-12).
All three are members of the Black Maternal Health Caucus, founded in 2019 to improve black maternal health outcomes.
Statistics show that black women are nearly four times more likely than white women and more than twice as likely as women of other races to die from preventable, pregnancy-related complications. They also experience higher rates of maternal complications and infant mortality.
The Act is designed to fill gaps in existing legislation to comprehensively address every dimension of the black maternal health crisis in the nation. If passed, the bills included in it will result in the following:
Among the over 100 organizations endorsing the Act are the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, American College of Nurse-Midwives, and Planned Parenthood.
Said Senator Harris in a press release about the legislative package, “Black women across the country are dying from pregnancy and childbirth complications at astounding rates and the disparity transcends income and education levels. It is critical that the federal government work with states, local health providers, and mothers and their families to address the crisis and save lives.”
1. Black Maternal Health Momnibus. Black Maternal Health Caucas. https://blackmaternalhealthcaucus-underwood.house.gov/Momnibus. Published March 18, 2020.