MOMS for the 21st Century Talking Points
- MOMS for the 21st Century (H.R. 2141), as introduced by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) in the House of Representatives, will improve maternal health outcomes in the United States by harnessing the best evidence in maternity care delivery. It will also bend the cost curve of our maternity care expenditures in the US.
- The US spends more than double per capita on childbirth than other industrialized countries, but ranks far behind almost all developed countries in perinatal outcomes, with considerable disparities in communities of color. Despite a vast body of best evidence-based practices in maternity care, current practice has not followed the research. Procedure-rich hospital stays during pregnancy and delivery in the US render hospital maternity care as Medicaid’s most costly expense.
- MOMS for the 21st Century would support best maternity practices and education of a more diverse maternity care workforce. Provisions include promotion of optimal maternity care, a national media campaign, expansion and dissemination of best maternity care data and core maternity care curricula, more loan repayment and funding for minority recruitment and retention, and reimbursement for midwives who supervise medical residents, medical students, and student midwives.
- Midwives practice a care philosophy that focuses on the specific needs of women, empowers women to actively participate in their health care, and minimizes unnecessary intervention. Certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) are highly educated professionals who work collaboratively with physicians. CNMs/CMs specialize in caring for women during pregnancy, labor and delivery, and after birth. They care for adolescents, women of childbearing age, and women during menopausal years.
- Today's CNMs/CMs are skilled health care professionals who provide primary health care. This includes evaluation, assessment, treatment, and referral to a specialist, if required. CNMs/CMs emphasize health promotion, education, and disease prevention. They provide preconception counseling, care during pregnancy and childbirth, normal gynecologic services, and care for peri- and post-menopausal women. Focusing on education, CNMs/CMs help prevent problems and assist women in developing and maintaining good health habits. Midwives can prescribe medications, including methods of contraception and treatment for common infections.
- Ask your US Representative to cosponsor H.R. 2141. The bill has not been introduced in the Senate, so Senate offices do not need to be contacted at this time. To see if your legislator is already a cosponsor, go to http://www.thomas.gov/, and enter “optimal maternity services” as the search word. Click on cosponsors to see the most current list. If your legislator is a current cosponsor, make sure to send him or her a thank you note.
For more information, please contact Patrick Cooney, ACNM Federal Lobbyist at 202-347-0034 or firstname.lastname@example.org.