Amnesty International USA Commends Rep. Roybal-Allard on Introduction of "MOMS for 21st Century Act"
July 22, 2010
Amnesty International Executive Director Larry Cox issued the following statement in support of the "MOMS for the 21st Century Act," introduced Wednesday evening in the House of Representatives by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard, (D-CA):
"Amnesty International commends Rep. Roybal-Allard for her commitment to improving the outcomes and disparities in maternal health in the United States. Access to good quality maternal health care is a right, not a privilege. It is shameful that as a nation we have neglected this right for so many women for so long. Amnesty International is grateful for Rep. Roybal-Allard's leadership and her recognition of the terrible human cost of this failure. We stand behind this significant legislative effort to ensure that all women have access to the maternal health care they need.
"The "MOMS for the 21st Century Act," if passed, will require the U.S. government to live up to its obligation to address this problem by developing a coordinated approach to maternal care that will improve women's access to quality, evidence-based care and will begin to address maternal health disparities. This is a first step to reducing the needless loss of women's lives that tragically affect so many families in the United States and preventing the complications that have risen steadily for decades.
"The United States is the wealthiest country in the world and spends more on health care than any other country. But we are failing to reverse the trend of preventable maternal deaths and complications. Amnesty International USA's recent report "Deadly Delivery: The Maternal Health Care Crisis in the USA" found that women in the United States have a greater lifetime risk of dying of pregnancy-related causes than women in 40 other countries. For women of color, the risks are especially high. As a nation, we simply cannot allow one more woman to die needlessly or experience life-threatening complications. We must urgently move toward a health care system that respects, protects and fulfills the human right to health."
To read Amnesty International's report, "Deadly Delivery," or take action on maternal health, please visit: "http://amnestyusa.org/deadlydelivery"