NYC’s new package of bills aims to close racial maternal health gap

New York City Mayor Eric Adams on September 6 signed historic legislation to ensure New York City remains a national leader in maternal health. At a time when Black mothers are nine times more likely to die of pregnancy-related causes than white women in New York City, these bills will promote education, increase transparency, and expand access to maternal health care for pregnant New Yorkers. The passage and signing of these bills underscore the city’s commitment to ensuring every expecting family has the resources and support needed to welcome a newborn into their lives. 

“This is a critical moment for women’s health in New York City and across the country,” said Mayor Adams. “For those who choose it, motherhood can be tough — physically, medically, psychologically. I’ve seen firsthand the resilience of mothers: My mother gave birth to six children. And the numbers are clear: Black women are nine times more likely to die of pregnancy-related causes than white women in New York City. Today, we are making sure all expecting families have access to health care when they need it most, no matter the color of their skin, their income bracket, or where they live. Our children are our most precious resource and by investing in them and their families from the start, we’ll build a safer and healthier city for generations to come. I’m grateful to the City Council for their partnership getting this important work done.” 

“The package of bills signed today help us take significant steps in supporting expectant families and in closing the racial maternal health gap,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom.  

“Maternal health inequities demand urgent action,” said New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan. “These bills will provide more data, more services, and more information to families about what’s available. They are forceful responses that we are proud to support.” 

“This package of bills will help NYC Health + Hospitals in its ongoing efforts to provide our patients with high-quality, comprehensive health care before, during, and after pregnancy,” said NYC Health + Hospitals Chief Women’s Health Officer Wendy Wilcox, MD, MPH, MBA, FACOG.  

Image courtesy of (Image courtesy: Office of NYC Mayor)

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