Black Women in Virginia are More than Twice as Likely to Die from Pregnancy-Related Complications Than White Women
**CLICK HERE for Photos of Spanberger and Virginia Maternal Healthcare Professionals & Providers at Roundtable Discussion**
WOODBRIDGE, Va. — U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger — a member of the Black Maternal Health Caucus and cosponsor of the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act — yesterday hosted a roundtable discussion in Prince William County to hear directly from maternal healthcare professionals, medical providers, and local officials about the maternal health crisis in Virginia.
More expecting mothers die during pregnancy and childbirth in the United States than in any other high-income country. In Virginia alone, Black women are more than twice as likely to die from pregnancy-related complications than white women — and two-thirds of these deaths are preventable.
During the event, Spanberger and the attendees discussed the challenges facing the region’s patients and providers in contending with the maternal health crisis. Spanberger also shared how the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act would address drivers of maternal mortality and help save lives. Additionally, Spanberger discussed the barriers women of color have long faced to accessing abortion care and the disproportionate impact of the Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization to overturn Roe v. Wade last year.
“No mother should have to fear dying during or after childbirth, and no child should have to endure the pain of losing their mother to an avoidable death. This is a reality we cannot accept. And as your Representative in Congress, I am committed to addressing this crisis,” said Spanberger during the event. “That’s why I was proud to help introduce the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act. The Momnibus is a collection of thirteen individual bills meant to reduce the gap between the mortality of Black and white mothers — including through investing in community organizations, expanding WIC eligibility, and supporting mothers struggling with mental health challenges. These policies are vital to supporting Black mothers across the country and here in Virginia.”
Spanberger and the group of local maternal and community health professionals were joined at the roundtable discussion by Andrea Bailey, Potomac District Supervisor, Prince William County Board of Supervisors.
In May 2023, Spanberger helped reintroduce the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act — which she originally helped introduce in March 2020 — to address the maternal health crisis by investing in community organizations that are working to improve Black maternal health outcomes, improving data collection, increasing the study of the unique health risks facing women of color, expanding digital tools like telehealth, and recruiting and training a diverse perinatal workforce.
In the wake of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision, U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger helped reintroduce legislation to codify the protections granted under the decisions in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey as the law of the land. The Spanberger-backed legislation would create a statutory right for providers to provide and patients to receive an abortion — without facing medically unnecessary restrictions.