WASHINGTON, DC – Last night, Senator Jacky Rosen’s (D-NV) bipartisan Data Mapping to Save Moms’ Lives Act with Senator Deb Fischer (R-NE), passed the Senate after recently advancing out of the House, and is now headed to President Biden’s desk to be signed into law. The legislation would require the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to identify areas where high rates of poor maternal health outcomes overlap with lack of access to broadband services in order to pinpoint where telehealth services can be most effective.
“With one of the highest maternal mortality rates of any developed nation, we need to take action to save lives,” said Senator Rosen. “This bipartisan legislation will direct the government to use data to identify areas where we can improve access to broadband and telemedicine to get moms the access to health care services they need, and I am thrilled it is now headed to President Biden’s desk to be signed into law.”
The maternal mortality rate in the United States is by far the highest of any developed country, with more than 50,000 pregnancies facing severe complications each year. In part because of the lack of medical resources in rural communities and the health provider shortage, Nevada has a maternal morbidity rate higher than the national average. The critical information gathered by the FCC as part of this law will help identify where improved access to telehealth services can be most effective, an issue of particular importance as U.S. women face startling statistics during pregnancy. Senators Rosen and Fischer introduced their bipartisan bill early last year alongside Senators Todd Young (R-IN) and Brian Schatz (D-HI).