The Department of Health and Human Services today released a five-year plan to reduce the U.S. maternal mortality rate by 50% and low-risk cesarean deliveries by 25%, and achieve blood pressure control for at least 80% of women of reproductive age with hypertension. Among other specific actions, the plan commits to investing in workforce development, such as funds for health care providers serving the most vulnerable women, efforts to strengthen rural maternal care delivery, and scholarships to educate midwives; expanding hospital participation in the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM); and developing and publicly reporting maternal health quality measures. The AHA has focused on eliminating maternal mortality and improving outcomes for mothers and babies through its Better Health for Mothers and Babies initiative and is a partner in AIM.
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams, M.D., also released today a complementary national call to action outlining strategies for individuals, organizations, communities, health care providers, payers, innovators and researchers to improve maternal health and address disparities in outcomes. In addition, HHS announced a public-private partnership with the March of Dimes to implement evidence-based practices in hospitals to address disparities in maternal health outcomes for Black women. The AHA recently shared with members an implicit bias training resource available through the March of Dimes.