Legislation Improves Accountability Standards and Reduces Health Care Costs

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) today introduced the bipartisan Quality Care for Moms and Babies Act of 2015 to improve maternity care for women and newborns, and reduce health care costs.  The bill is also cosponsored by Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Bob Casey (D-PA), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), and Jack Reed (D-RI).

Senator Stabenow said: “We all have a stake in making sure women and children have the health care they need from the very start of a pregnancy.  This bill invests in the doctors, nurses, midwives and other maternity care providers who help make sure moms and babies receive quality care from the doctor’s office to the delivery room.”

Senator Chuck Grassley said: “Sharing best practices is something to encourage in any field, especially in health care, where lives are at stake. With the federal government paying for 40 percent of births in the United States and the incredible expense and risk of complicated deliveries, improving maternity outcome quality makes sense for moms, babies and taxpayers.”

John C. Jennings, President of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, said: “The goal of every obstetrician-gynecologist is a healthy mother and a healthy baby. Quality Care for Moms and Babies Act of 2015 will help labor and delivery teams apply the most current best practices, ensuring the highest quality care for mothers and leading to better outcomes for American families.”

National Partnership for Women & Families President Debra L. Ness said: “The Quality Care for Moms and Babies Act of 2015 is important legislation that can significantly improve the quality of maternity care in this country and give more babies the healthy start they need and deserve. We commend Senators Stabenow and Grassley for reintroducing it, and thank them for pressing hard for passage. Congress should have no higher priority than to pass this bill this year.”

Nearly a quarter of all hospitalizations are related to childbearing women and newborns.  The Quality Care for Moms and Babies Act of 2015 will improve maternity care for women and newborns by holding Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program accountable through higher quality standards.  The legislation will also support collaboration that promotes the best care and avoids medical complications to reduce costs.