Reps. Bucshon and Carson Introduce Legislation to Advance Efforts to Address Preventable Maternal Mortality

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Washington, September 5, 2019 | comments

(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Representatives Larry Bucshon, M.D. (IN-08) and André Carson (IN -07) introduce the Excellence in Maternal Health Act (H.R. 4215) to authorize the Department of Health and Human Services to establish grant programs to develop and disseminate best practices to improve maternal health care quality, training, and education in order to reduce preventable maternal mortality.

“As a physician and a father of four, I understand the importance of ensuring the health of mothers during pregnancy and after the delivery of newborns,” said Dr. Bucshon. “This is a critical time for both the mother and the child as a new life is brought into the world. We must do better in our approach across the entire nation, especially in rural America, to use best practices and provide necessary resources to stop preventable maternal mortality which is why I have introduced the Excellence in Maternal Health Act. I believe this bipartisan legislation will benefit patients and communities that are currently struggling.”

“I’m honored to join Rep. Bucshon in introducing this bipartisan legislation that will help save lives and improve health outcomes,” said Rep. Carson. “Maternal mortality is a national, public health emergency, particularly in Indiana. To face this crisis, we must implement the programs and reforms found in the bill to help put an end to these tragic and often preventable deaths. I’ll work hard to pass this measure to ensure the birth of a child is a joyous and safe occasion for families across America.”

 “Every mother deserves to see her baby celebrate their first birthday. Ensuring both moms and infants receive the health care and support they need is a key piece of my Next Level agenda. Achieving this requires an all-hands-on-deck approach, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to work with our federal delegation. With the resources the state is committing and the increased collaboration with local, state and federal partners, I am confident that Hoosier moms and babies will see improved health outcomes.” Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb


Innovation for Maternal Health
Secretary of HHS shall establish a program to award grants to eligible entities for the purposes of identifying, developing or disseminating best practices to improve maternal health care quality and eliminate preventable maternal mortality and severe maternal morbidity.
The bill authorizes $10 million per year for years 2020-2024

Training for Health Care Providers
The bill establishes a grant program to accredited schools for training health care professionals to reduce and prevent discrimination in the provision of health care services related to prenatal care, labor care, birthing, and postpartum care.
The bill authorizes $5,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2020 through 2024.

Study on Training to Reduce and Prevent Discrimination
Within two years the Secretary shall study and make recommendations related to training to reduce and prevent discrimination in the provision of health care services related to prenatal care, labor care, birthing, and postpartum care.

Perinatal Quality Collaboratives
The Secretary, acting through the CDC and in coordination with other offices and agencies, shall establish or continue a grant program to establish or support perinatal quality collaboratives to improve perinatal care and perinatal health outcomes for pregnant and postpartum women and their infants. States may use the grants to support use of evidence based practices to improve outcomes for maternal and infant health, work with hospital-based or out-patient facility based clinical teams, experts, stakeholders, and patients and families to identify, develop, or disseminate, best practices to improve perinatal care and outcomes, and employ strategies for health care professionals to collaborate across healthcare settings to improve maternal and infant health outcomes.

Integrated Services for Pregnant and Postpartum Women
The Secretary may award grants to States to establish or operate evidence-based programs to deliver integrated health care services to pregnant and postpartum women to reduce adverse maternal health outcomes, pregnancy related deaths, and related health disparities.
Additionally, the Secretary shall give priority to up to 15 states, tribes, or tribal organizations with the highest maternal mortality and severe maternal morbidity. The Secretary shall issue a report on the grant outcomes and best practices, and the Secretary shall disseminate information on the best practices and models of care used by grant recipients.
The bill authorizes $15,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2020 through 2024.

Congressman Larry Bucshon, M.D. is a physician and Republican member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee serving his fifth term representing Indiana's 8th Congressional district. The 8th District of Indiana includes all or parts of Clay, Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Gibson, Greene, Knox, Martin, Owen, Parke, Perry, Pike, Posey, Spencer, Sullivan, Vanderburgh, Vermillion, Vigo, and Warrick counties.

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