AWHONN supports expanding research funding and opportunities to investigate and alleviate the causes of maternal morbidity and mortality, while supporting efforts to expand maternal mortality review committees. Every maternal death should be reviewed and more fully understood to prevent future deaths. We advocate for legislation that expands the work of state-based maternal mortality review committees and reduces disparities in maternal health outcomes. We also support research into the causes of maternal morbidity and mortality.
Legislation that would do just that has been introduced into both the House and the Senate. Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA-3) has introduced HR 1318, the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act and Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-SD) has introduced the identical companion bill S 1112, the Maternal Health Accountability Act.
These bills are noncontroversial and enjoy bipartisan support. They will pass if we can get the attention of Congress to prioritize moving them towards votes. One way of building momentum to advance a bill is to increase the number of cosponsors which builds the case that the bill has the support to pass.
Would you ask your representative to cosponsor HR 1318 and senators to cosponsor S 1112? Your voice matters and your elected officials will listen! For the past 15 years, nurses are consistently rated the most honest and ethical of all professions. Your individual voice, which is one of over 350,000 nurses who care for women and newborns, will make a difference.
Elected officials are most impressed by personal, original letters that share information about the writer’s community. Use the “talking points” and your own knowledge and experience as a nurse to draft a letter.