April 07, 2020

Warren Joins Murray to Release New GAO Report Underscoring Need to Address Maternal Mortality Crisis

Findings demonstrate the need for continued efforts to reduce maternal mortality and address racial, ethnic, and age-related disparities; While the maternal mortality ratio decreased globally by about three percent from 2000 to 2015, the ratio in the U.S. increased by three percent

Read the GAO Report 


Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) joined Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.), ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, and released a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) on maternal mortality describing how maternal deaths are tracked, trends and disparities in mortality data, and how federal funding is being used to reduce pregnancy-related deaths. Senators Warren and Murray requested the report in 2018 to determine how effectively federal investments were being used and what improvements could be made to promote maternal health.


The GAO report found that according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 6,700 women died of causes related to or aggravated by their pregnancy between 2007 and 2016. Rates are far higher for some communities of color, with non-Hispanic black women more than three times as likely to die than non-Hispanic white women. The report also advances understanding of how the CDC monitors these deaths and which Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) programs are available and being used by states to address this crisis.


In addition to Senators Warren and Murray, the report was released by Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.).


The full text of the report, “Maternal Mortality: Trends in Pregnancy-Related Deaths and Federal Efforts to Reduce Them,” can be found HERE.