A couple of months ago (before the government shutdown happened) landmark federal legislation was passed and signed that will provide millions of dollars to help states determine why women are dying from pregnancy and childbirth at troubling rates.
The new funding is great news because studies have found that at least half of childbirth-related deaths could have been prevented if health care providers had followed best medical practices to ensure complications were diagnosed and treated quickly and effectively.
The bill provides $12M in annual funding to the CDC to pass through to states with maternal mortality review committees and create committees in the 12 states that lack them. Arizona has a committee in statute because of a law signed in 2011 - here's a link to the most recent report.
In order to qualify for funding, states need to demonstrate that their “methods and processes for data collection and review use best practices to reliably determine and include all pregnancy-associated deaths and pregnancy-related deaths, regardless of the outcome of the pregnancy.” All indications are that the ADHS meets these CDC data standards and therefore would qualify for funding.
We and the Arizona Chapter of the March of Dimes will keep an eye out for the grant announcement and offer any assistance that the ADHS needs with their application for this important funding opportunity that can be used to save the lives of Arizona moms.