Both the House and Senate have passed a bill that would ramp up the state’s surveillance of maternal mortality.
The legislation, sponsored by Del. Roxann Robinson, R-Chesterfield, establishes the maternal mortality review team and tasks the Department of Health with reviewing the rate of pregnancy-related deaths in Virginia.
It also requires the team to identify factors that could contribute to maternal mortality and develop prevention and intervention recommendations.
The team will have to compile data on maternal deaths every three years and report it to the governor and General Assembly.
“Above all, this will go a long way to reducing our maternal mortality rate,” Robinson said in a news release.
Women in the United States are more likely to die from childbirth or pregnancy-related causes than other women in the developed world, the CDC says.
“Research suggests that half of these deaths are preventable,” the agency says.
And the risk of pregnancy-related deaths for black women is three to four times higher than those of white women.
“Sadly, too many mothers are dying from preventable childbirth complications and many more suffering severe injuries during childbirth,” Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, said in a statement. “This legislation will strengthen our healthcare system and protect mothers.”
From The Bulletin, the Mercury’s blog, where we post quick hits on the news of the day, odds and ends and commentary.