Washington, D.C. – The following is a statement on behalf of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), from J. Martin Tucker, MD, FACOG, president of ACOG:
“After years of steadfastly urging the U.S. Congress to pass the Maternal Health Quality Improvement Act and building a broad coalition of support around it, ACOG is pleased to celebrate the passage of this legislation today.
“The Maternal Health Quality Improvement Act, which passed as part of the 2022 omnibus spending bill, took years of congressional and stakeholder collaboration to develop. While this bill alone won’t solve the maternal mortality crisis, it will go a long way to improve maternal health outcomes and help to eliminate racial inequities in maternal health.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has further exposed ongoing health inequities and, according to data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last month, has exacerbated the country's maternal mortality crisis, particularly for women of color.
“Notably, among other things, the bill authorizes funding to:
- Support training programs to address and prevent implicit bias and racism in the provision of health care services
- Authorize the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health program to facilitate the adoption of evidence-based maternal safety best practices
- Improve access to obstetric care in rural areas
“ACOG is dedicated to achieving public policies that help eliminate racial disparities and improve outcomes for those seeking obstetric care. Our advocacy work has led to the creation of new policies that combat inequities and help reduce maternal mortality and improve maternal health.
““We thank legislators—specifically bill sponsors Representatives Robin Kelly (D-IL) and Larry Bucshon, MD (R-IN); Senators Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL); and leaders on the House Energy and Commerce and Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committees—for recognizing the dire need for this investment and seizing the opportunity to pass meaningful legislation that will make a big difference in the lives of birthing people and families across the country.”