On this Mother’s Day, the Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs wants to thank AMCHP members for all you do today and every day to promote the health of women, children – including children with special health care needs – and families. This year, as we reflect on what Title V does to improve the health of mothers in particular, we want to highlight an important topic in maternal health.
Like us, you’ve probably seen an increased amount of attention in the news to the issue of maternal mortality. Several media outlets have written in-depth pieces about the tragedy of maternal death, telling the stories of the women whose lives have been lost and the impact that has had on their families and communities. These stories have also generated a tremendous response from members of Congress and lawmakers throughout the country seeking to understand why the U.S. fares the way it does and seeking opportunities for legislative solutions.
We have a unique opportunity to leverage this attention to enact real policy change that will help us better understand why women die during pregnancy, childbirth, and the year postpartum, as well as to put into place strategies to improve maternal health outcomes. AMCHP is proud to be actively partnering with other advocates for maternal health, including provider and patient groups, to encourage Congress to pass legislation that would establish a grant program through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to assist states in creating or expanding their maternal mortality review committees (Preventing Maternal Deaths Act H.R.1318 in the House of Representatives/ Maternal Health Accountability Act S.1112 in the Senate). We are also pressing Congress to adequately fund efforts such as the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health program out of HRSA’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau.
We encourage you to similarly leverage this attention in your own states and jurisdictions by educating your elected officials or writing a letter to the editor about how Title V already plays a role in addressing maternal mortality as well as how we are well-positioned to continue moving strategies from review to action. AMCHP is proud to serve as a resource and partner to help you do this, and I hope you will contact AMCHP staff for assistance as you undertake these activities. For further information please contact Amy Haddad, director of policy and government affairs, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And most importantly, we wish you and your loved ones a happy Mother’s Day!
Lori Tremmel Freeman, CEO