In a letter, Black Maternal Health Caucus Members, Congresswoman Gwen Moore and Congressman Joe Kennedy, asked Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) Administrator, Seema Verma, to provide guidance to states that are seeking to expand their Medicaid programs to include midwife care. In response, the Members released the following statements:
“Our country faced a maternal mortality crisis before the pandemic. But COVID-19 has changed the birthing experience for expectant mothers across the country, with more and more individuals choosing to give birth at home and utilize a midwife.
Now more than ever, mothers need access to quality health care. That’s why it’s important that CMS provides guidance to states seeking to expand this crucial care to women,” said Congresswoman Gwen Moore.
“We will not end the maternal mortality crisis in this country if we do not empower the providers that care for pregnant women and understand their challenges. Particularly as Black women are three to four times as likely to die giving birth than white women, we cannot let outdated policies deny them lifesaving treatment – not during a pandemic and not ever. CMS Administrator Verma needs to provide this guidance for states immediately,” said Congressman Joe Kennedy III.
Read the full text of the letter here.