Maternal Health: Take Action
The COVID-19 pandemic is illuminating the tragic consequences of disparities in access to health care. We have the opportunity to address disparities and improve maternal health by supporting the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020. Contact your Member of Congress today!
As United Methodists, we affirm that healthcare is a basic human right (United Methodist Social Principles, ¶162V) and specifically call for increase access to maternal health and family-planning services (3203: Maternal Health: The Church’s Role). Our vision supports access to quality, affordable, equitable health care for all.
The current reality, however, falls tragically short of that vision. Worldwide, 830 mothers die each day from pregnancy related complications. While this number is decreasing globally, it is increasing in 13 countries including the United States - the only high-income country on the list.
Studies show that 60% of pregnancy-related deaths are preventable and that pregnancy-related deaths and complications disproportionately impact racial and ethnic minorities. In the US, Black women die in childbirth at a rate 3 to 4 times higher than white women. Confronted with this clear injustice, we are called to respond.
The good news is that raising our voices in advocacy works. In 2018, we successfully supported passage of the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act - an important first step in documenting disparities and identifying recommendations to improve the quality of women’s health care. Today, we have the opportunity to take another step forward.
The Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020 is a package of nine bills aimed at improving maternal health. These bills would invest in community-based organizations, grow and diversify the workforce, and support data collection, digital tools, and innovative payment models.
In addition to direct efforts to improve Black maternal health outcomes, the Momnibus focuses on other high-risk populations including women veterans, incarcerated women, and Native Americans.
It is a moral imperative that every mother has access to resources and care that they need to thrive. Contact your members of Congress today and ask them to support the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020.