March of Dimes Responds to Congressional Passage of FY 23 Omnibus Spending Bill
Applauds Major Policy Improvements to Address Maternal and Children’s Health Care and Put in Place New Protections for Pregnant Workers
March of Dimes, the leading organization fighting for the health of all moms and babies, today responded to Congress passing an omnibus spending bill with key policy and funding priorities to strengthen maternal and infant health, and includes critical new protections for pregnant workers through the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act.
“We are thrilled to see the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act included in the omnibus, a bipartisan bill that would ensure that pregnant workers have the reasonable accommodations they need to work safely while having healthy pregnancies,” said Stacey Y. Brayboy, March of Dimes Senior Vice President of Public Policy & Government Affairs. “PWFA was adopted as an amendment to the omnibus thanks to the leadership and determination of its Senate sponsors Senators Bob Casey and Bill Cassidy. This tremendous policy win is the culmination of more than a decade of hard-fought efforts by the bill champions, March of Dimes and our coalition partners, and all the advocates who shared their personal stories.”
March of Dimes thanks Senators Patty Murray and Richard Burr for prioritizing the needs of pregnant workers; Senate Majority Leader Schumer for his steadfast commitment to passing this critical legislation; and the PWFA champions in the House of Representatives, Rep. Bobby Scott, long-time champion Rep. Jerry Nadler, and Rep. John Katko.
“We’re very pleased that the omnibus spending bill includes several provisions that will improve the health of moms and babies, such as making the state option to extend Medicaid postpartum coverage to 12 months permanent,” said Dr. Phyllis Dennery, March of Dimes Board Trustee, Chair of Department of Pediatrics at Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Pediatrician-in Chief at Rhode Island Hospital, and Medical Director at Hasbro Children’s Hospital. “This policy will provide certainty and incentivize more states to take advantage of this coverage option that will save new mothers’ lives. Extending Medicaid postpartum coverage is critical to lowering the nation’s alarming maternal mortality rate. Over half of pregnancy-related deaths occur between one week and one year postpartum so 12 months of continuous Medicaid eligibility removes key access barriers that often prevent new mothers from getting the care they need after childbirth. We thank all the House and Senate champions who pushed to make this policy improvement a reality.”
This effort was successful due to the work of countless advocates and organizations across the country. March of Dimes expresses its thanks to Rep. Frank Pallone and Senator Ron Wyden, Rep. Robin Kelly and Senator Dick Durbin for their leadership; Senator Cory Booker, and Rep. Lauren Underwood and Rep. Alma Adams, the co-chairs of the Black Maternal Health Caucus, for their leadership on maternal health legislation this Congress.
March of Dimes policy priorities included in the omnibus spending bill:
March of Dimes also applauds Congress for its support of funding priorities for key maternal and infant health programs in the omnibus spending bill, including:
March of Dimes will continue to advocate for the following policy priorities in the 118th Congress:
Increase access to quality health care: March of Dimes advocates for access to quality, high-value, private health insurance and public health coverage, as well as programs that provide integrated health care services.
Support healthy women and babies: March of Dimes supports a broad range of policies and programs to promote health, improve health equity, prevent disease, further patient safety and prevent infant mortality. Advocating for a comprehensive national response to high maternal mortality and morbidity rates, especially among women of color who face health disparities.
Improve research and surveillance: March of Dimes advocates for innovative medical research and robust health surveillance programs, which are essential to discovering ways to prevent, diagnose and treat maternal and child health conditions, track occurrence and promote health equity.
March of Dimes leads the fight for the health of all moms and babies. We support research, lead programs and provide education and advocacy so that every family can have the best possible start. Building on a successful 84-year legacy, we support every pregnant person and every family. To learn more about March of Dimes, please visit marchofdimes.org.