January 10, 2017
Washington, DC -- Thomas Gellhaus, M.D., President, The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), FACOG and Lisa Kane Low, American College of Nurse- Midwives (ACNM), President, CNM, PhD, FACNM, FAAN, released a joint statement regarding the House of Representatives passage of the Improving Access to Maternity Care Act:
?ACOG and ACNM applaud the U.S. House of Representatives for passing HR 315, Improving Access to Maternity Care Act, introduced by US Representatives Michael Burgess, MD, FACOG (R-TX), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA).
?This legislation addresses ACOG and ACNM?s longstanding priority to ensure every woman has safe and timely access to care from a women?s health care provider and seeks to determine areas throughout the country that are experiencing a significant shortage of full scope maternity care professionals, including ob-gyns, certified nurse-midwives (CNMs), and certified midwives (CMs), and eliminate those gaps.
?Shortages of maternity care providers cause serious public health concerns for women, children, and families when they are forced to endure long wait times for routine visits or fail to receive adequate care for serious medical conditions, including during pregnancy. Improving the geographic representation of women?s health care providers will help alleviate the significant pressures communities and health systems currently face and enable them to serve the growing number of women in the United States.
?We commend the House of Representatives for voting to ensure that ob-gyns and CNMs participating in the National Health Service Corps are placed where they are needed most. We are especially grateful to Reps. Burgess, Eshoo, and Roybal-Allard. Thanks to their leadership, we are one step closer to bringing essential care to pregnant women and making it possible for them to get the quality maternity care that they need, regardless of where they live.
?We urge the U.S. Senate to swiftly pass the bill and send it to the President?s desk for signature.?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (The College), a 501(c)(3) organization, is the nation?s leading group of physicians providing health care for women. As a private, voluntary, nonprofit membership organization of more than 58,000 members, The College strongly advocates for quality health care for women, maintains the highest standards of clinical practice and continuing education of its members, promotes patient education, and increases awareness among its members and the public of the changing issues facing women?s health care. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), a 501(c)(6) organization, is its companion organization.www.acog.org
With nearly 7800 members, ACNM is the professional association that represents certified nurse-midwives (CNMs) and certified midwives (CMs) in the United States. ACNM promotes excellence in midwifery education, clinical practice, and research. With roots dating to 1929, our members are primary care providers for women throughout the lifespan, with a special emphasis on pregnancy, childbirth, and gynecologic and reproductive health. ACNM provides research, administers and promotes continuing education programs, establishes clinical practice standards, and creates liaisons with state and federal agencies and members of Congress to increase the visibility and recognition of midwifery care. www.midwife.org