| Black Maternal Health Omnibus Act of 2020
Senator Baldwin, a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), has helped to introduce an
historic legislative package to address the United States’ urgent maternal health crisis.
The Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2020, led by Senator Kamala D. Harris (D-CA) and Representatives Lauren Underwood (IL-
14) and Alma Adams (NC-12), will build on existing maternal health legislation by filling gaps through nine new bills to
comprehensively address every dimension of the Black maternal health crisis. The Black Maternal Health Momnibus makes
investments in social determinants of health, community-based organizations, the growth and diversification of the perinatal workforce,
data collection and quality measure improvements, digital tools like telehealth, and innovative payment models. In addition to direct
efforts to improve Black maternal health outcomes, the Momnibus focuses on high-risk populations, including women veterans,
incarcerated women, and Native Americans.
“Maternal and infant mortality rates are tragically high in Wisconsin, and they are even higher in the Black community. We need to do
more to make sure women and families have access to quality, affordable health care,” said Senator Baldwin. “We know that healthier
pregnancies lead to healthier babies. That’s why I’m working with my colleagues to provide more resources to expecting moms and
address the challenges in our maternal health system so mothers and pregnant women can get the care they need."
The United States has the worst maternal death rates in the developed world, and the only rate that is rising. The maternal mortality rate
is significantly higher among black women, who are three to four times more likely than white women to die from pregnancy-related
complications. Black women also experience higher rates of maternal complications and infant mortality. They are twice as likely to
lose an infant to premature death, and these disparities have not improved for more than 30 years.
The Black Maternal Health Momnibus is composed of nine individual bills. The legislation will:
Make critical investments in social determinants of health that influence maternal health outcomes, like housing, transportation, and
Provide funding to community-based organizations that are working to improve maternal health outcomes, particularly for Black
Comprehensively study the unique maternal health risks facing women veterans and invest in VA maternity care coordination;
Grow and diversify the perinatal workforce to ensure that every mom in America receives maternity care and support from trusted
Improve data collection processes and quality measures to better understand the causes of the maternal health crisis in the United
States and inform solutions to address it;
Invest in maternal mental health care and substance use disorder treatments;
Improve maternal health care and support for incarcerated women;
Invest in digital tools like telehealth to improve maternal health outcomes in underserved areas; and
Promote innovative payment models to incentivize high-quality maternity care and continuity of health insurance coverage from
pregnancy through labor and delivery and up to one year postpartum.
Read more about the Black Maternal Health Momnibus and see why the Center for Reproductive Rights, the Black Mamas Matter
Alliance, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and over 90 other groups all support the legislation here.