Women are more likely to die in childbirth in the U.S. than in any other developed country. The crisis is growing worse, particularly for Black women. Each year, nearly 700 American women die from pregnancy or delivery complications, and the U.S. is one of 13 countries where maternal mortality rates are worse than they were two decades ago. Black women are over three times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications than white women. Under President Trump, more women lack access to critical health services, and the disparities in coverage are growing even more severe.
Mike will tackle our maternal mortality crisis head-on, with a particular focus on decreasing disparities for communities of color. He will expand access to maternal and reproductive health care, launch new efforts to reduce racial disparities in health care, and protect a woman’s right to choose.
- Require implicit bias training for doctors
- Collect reliable data on maternal mortality
- Ensure all low-income women can access health coverage
- Boost funding for HBCU medical schools
- Expand the National Health Service Corps
- Encourage states to allow advanced practice nurses and physicians’ assistants to provide more care
Address racial bias
Mike will address bias in medicine – both implicit and explicit – by requiring doctors to complete training to understand and counter bias. Mike’s plan also boosts funding for medical schools at historically black colleges and universities to increase the number of people of color in the health care industry.
To address a lack of reliable data around maternal mortality, Mike’s plan centralizes data collection at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and uses the data to inform and improve standards of health care. The data will be used to establish programs to assist clinicians in identifying high-risk pregnancies.
Provide a public-option insurance plan — free of charge
Mike’s plan will ensure that all low-income women can obtain health coverage in all 50 states. He will allow people in states that haven’t expanded Medicaid under the ACA, who would otherwise be eligible, to enroll in the public-option free of charge.
Support rural communities
Mike’s plan will bring more doctors to rural areas and encourage states to permit trained medical professionals to provide certain aspects of care that currently only doctors are allowed to provide — including maternal care. Mike will expand the National Health Service Corps, which offers loan repayment and scholarship opportunities for doctors who practice in high-need areas, to also cover medical students from minority communities.
Protect women’s right to choose
Mike will work with Congress to codify Roe v. Wade, guaranteeing legal access to safe abortion in all 50 states. He will also partner with Congress to repeal the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits using federal funds to pay for abortions except to save the life of the mother, or in cases of incest or rape. In addition, Mike pledges to abolish a new rule put into place by President Trump that bans Title X organizations from providing abortions (even if they are funded separately) and from referring patients to other abortion providers.
Improving maternal health has been a focus of Mike’s work as a mayor and a philanthropist.
As mayor, Mike adopted the Nurse-Family Partnership, a successful program that matches low-income first-time mothers with a nurse who visits the family in its home during pregnancy and the first couple years of parenthood.
New York City’s infant mortality rate fell to historic lows during Mike’s time in office, with a nearly 25 percent overall rate decline from 2001 to 2013, more than the national average.
Since 2012, his foundation has funded an innovative maternal health program in Tanzania. In 2014, Bloomberg Philanthropies partnered with Planned Parenthood Global to provide more women with access to reproductive health care and reduce maternal mortality in developing countries.