McEachin urging action to address black maternal mortality crisis

donald mceachinBlack women in Virginia are three times more likely to die during childbirth, and twice as likely to suffer post-partum mortality, than white women.

This is crisis, and Congressman Donald McEachin, D-Va., is pushing for action.

“As a father to two young women, Virginia’s black maternal health crisis is personal – I am standing not just with the black women across the state who are already committed to this important work, but with my children and future generations,” said McEachin, who on Wednesday introduced a House resolution urging federal action to lower maternal mortality and morbidity rates and mitigate stark race-based disparities in maternal health outcomes.

The resolution is the latest effort to address the black maternal mortality crisis. Congresswoman Robin Kelly, D-Ill., introduced the Helping Medicaid Offer Maternity Services (Helping MOMS) Act, which would incentivize states to expand Medicaid to cover the entire postpartum period to provide quality coverage for all women, in 2019.

Congresswoman Aryanna Pressley, D-Mass., has introduced the Maximizing Outcomes for Moms through Medicaid Improvement and Enhancement of Services (MOMMIES) Act, which would give pregnant and postpartum women full Medicaid coverage rather than limit it to pregnancy-related services.

“The racial disparities in Virginia’s maternal health outcomes are yet another example of the reality that from birth, our communities are forced to grapple with systemic racism,”  McEachin said. “I look forward to further supporting the work of advocates in Virginia and my colleagues in Congress towards reducing black maternal mortality rates throughout the Commonwealth and across the country.”

Story by Chris Graham

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