December 8, 2020
The Administration Addresses Maternal Morality
The United States has one of the worst maternal mortality rates in the developed world, and to address this challenge the Trump Administration has released two reports outlining how to improve the health and safety of mothers. AAF’s Director of Human Welfare Policy Tara O’Neill Hayes assesses these reports — one from the Surgeon General and one from the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) — and notes that they provide specific actions that should make a meaningful impact.
The goals laid out in these reports are ambitious: To make the United States one of the safest places in the world to give birth by reducing MMR by 50 percent in five years; reducing low-risk cesarean deliveries by 25 percent in five years; and achieving blood pressure control for 80 percent of reproduction-age women with hypertension in five years. The HHS Action Plan identifies four key methods for achieving these goals: improving prevention and treatment before pregnancy, prioritizing quality improvement during pregnancy and birth, optimizing postpartum health, and improving data collection and research to inform future interventions.