The Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2017 (H.R. 1318) was introduced March 2, 2017 in the U.S. House of Representative by Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA), Congressmen John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), Congressman Ryan Costello (R-PA), and Congresswoman Diana DeGetter (D-CO).
The bill will support states in establishing or expanding their maternal mortality review efforts and promote national information sharing through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The United States ranks 50th globally for its rising maternal mortality rate despite major advancements in medical technology and treatments.
While congress consistently invests in programs focused on infant mortality it has largely ignored the need for the nations mothers. “Our nation’s ob-gyns are extremely concerned by the alarming rates of maternal death in the United States. We know MMRCs are critical to understanding each tragic incident and recommending evidence-based public health improvements to save lives. MMRCs are local solutions to a national problem. We are confident this legislation will help us address this serious issue and create effective and cost-saving solutions that fit each community, shares president of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Thomas M. Gellhaus, MD.
“Very early on in our development of the foundation, it was alarming to learn our nation has such a fractured system for collecting data for women who die in childbirth or nearly die”, shares AFE Foundation Executive Director, Miranda Klassen. “AFE is a leading cause of maternal mortality and morbidity and these events must be captured in a way for us to better understand incidence and survival rates and most especially to enhance research initiatives. We are pleased to announce our endorsement for the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2017 and will be actively engaged in advocacy efforts.”
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and Preeclampsia Foundation were the bills supporting organizations.