House committee to investigate rising maternal mortality rates

House committee to investigate rising maternal mortality rates
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The House Ways & Means Committee will investigate rising maternal mortality rates in the U.S. 

"With this investigation, we are committed to finding out why these deaths are happening and where Congress can take action to not only prevent these deaths, but also reverse this trend," Republicans on the committee led by Chairman Kevin BradyKevin Patrick BradyDemocrats, GOP spar over Treasury rules on Trump tax law Ex-HHS chief threatens to vote 'no' on surprise medical billing measure Bipartisan Ways and Means leaders unveil measure to stop surprise medical bills MORE (R-Texas), said in a statement.

While rates of maternal mortality have declined in other industrialized countries, they have dramatically increased in the U.S. since 2000.


About 700 to 900 women die in the U.S. every year from mostly preventable complications related to pregnancy, such as blood loss and high blood pressure. 

The investigation will focus on why maternal mortality and morbidity rates are rising in the U.S., and what federal agencies, states and hospitals are doing about it. 

Research has also shown that the majority of pregnancy related deaths are preventable. For example, some deaths are related to high blood pressure of significant blood loss. 

"It is absolutely unacceptable that preventable failures are the cause of avoidable, unnecessary, and absolutely tragic deaths," the lawmakers said.

"America needs to be the health care leader of the world, and women across the country need to know they will be safe and in good hands while giving birth."