Bipartisan House panel leaders ask agencies for maternal mortality data

Bipartisan House panel leaders ask agencies for maternal mortality data
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Bipartisan leaders on the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Wednesday sent letters to six federal agencies requesting summaries of their efforts to address maternal morbidity and mortality rates in the U.S.

Pregnancy-related deaths in the U.S. have increased by more than 100 percent since 1987, from 7.2 deaths per 100,000 live births to 18 deaths per 100,000 in 2014, according to the letters.

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Leaders on the House panel sent the requests to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Indian Health Service and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health.

The letters emphasized disproportionate maternal mortality rates among black mothers.

“While maternal mortality rates have been increasing in the United States in recent years, since 1950, black mothers have continued to die at three to four times the rate of white mothers, representing one of the widest racial disparities in women’s health,” the letters state. Earlier this month, Reps. Lauren UnderwoodLauren UnderwoodAyanna Pressley's 'squad' of congresswomen offers support after she opens up about alopecia Democrats worry party is squandering political opportunity on ObamaCare Overnight Health Care — Presented by Rare Access Action Project — Court ruling reignites ObamaCare fight for 2020 | Congress expands probe into surprise billing | Health industry racks up wins in year-end spending deal MORE (D-Ill.) and Alma AdamsAlma Shealey AdamsDemocrats likely to gain seats under new North Carolina maps Giving light to the insulin crisis GOP senator blasts Dem bills on 'opportunity zones' MORE (D-N.C.) announced the formation of the Black Maternal Health Caucus.

“This is an important first step, and we are interested in exploring additional efforts that may be underway to further improve reporting, data collection, and activities related to reducing maternal morbidity and mortality,” the committee leaders added in the letters.

The letters were signed by Committee Chairman Frank Pallone Jr.Frank Joseph PalloneOvernight Health Care — Presented by That's Medicaid — Deal on surprise medical bills faces obstacles | House GOP unveils rival drug pricing measure ahead of Pelosi vote | Justices to hear case over billions in ObamaCare payments Obstacles remain for deal on surprise medical bills This week: House impeachment inquiry hits crucial stretch MORE (D-N.J.) and ranking member Greg WaldenGregory (Greg) Paul WaldenConservative groups aim to sink bipartisan fix to 'surprise' medical bills Overnight Energy: Schumer votes against USMCA, citing climate impact | Republicans offer details on their environmental proposals | Microsoft aims to be carbon negative by 2030 Republicans offer details on environmental proposals after Democrats roll out plan MORE (R-Ore.). Health Subcommittee Chairwoman Anna Esho (D-Calif.) and subcommittee ranking member Michael BurgessMichael Clifton BurgessOvernight Health Care: Big Pharma looks to stem losses after trade deal defeat | House panel to examine federal marijuana policies | House GOP reopens investigation into opioid manufacturers Lawmakers express alarm over rise in cocaine overdose deaths Hillicon Valley: House passes anti-robocall bill | Senators inch forward on privacy legislation | Trump escalates fight over tech tax | Illinois families sue TikTok | Senators get classified briefing on ransomware MORE (R-Texas) also signed, as did Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairwoman Diana DeGetteDiana Louise DeGetteLawmaker calls for hearing into MLB cheating scandal Overnight Health Care: Big Pharma looks to stem losses after trade deal defeat | House panel to examine federal marijuana policies | House GOP reopens investigation into opioid manufacturers Lawmakers express alarm over rise in cocaine overdose deaths MORE (D-Colo.) and subcommittee ranking member Brett GuthrieSteven (Brett) Brett GuthrieOvernight Health Care: Big Pharma looks to stem losses after trade deal defeat | House panel to examine federal marijuana policies | House GOP reopens investigation into opioid manufacturers Lawmakers express alarm over rise in cocaine overdose deaths House GOP reopens investigation into opioid manufacturers over role in crisis MORE (R-Ky.)