Out-of-Hospital Birth Access and Safety Act does not pass in 2017-2018 legislative session

Despite the current maternal health crisis nationwide and within MA, the MA legislature did not act to pass the bill HB4655 "An Act Relative to Out-of-Hospital Birth Access and Safety." The bill remained in the Committee on Health Care Financing through the end of the formal legislative session (after midnight on Aug 1). Your calls, e-mails, and State House visits over the past 18 months impressed upon many legislators the importance of this issue and we will build on this momentum moving forward. We look forward to working with the Massachusetts legislature to get the Out-of-Hospital Birth Access and Safety Act passed next session. Maternal and infant health can't wait.

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Massachusetts HB4655 reflects priority recommendations contained in new healthcare policy report

The National Partnership for Women & Families released their “Blueprint for Advancing High-Value Maternity Care Through Physiologic Childbearing” in June 2018. One of their priority recommendations was to grow the midwifery workforce. Massachusetts HB4655 “An Act Relative to Out-of-Hospital Birth Access and Safety” meets the Blueprint’s recommendations for Certified Professional Midwife (CPM) regulation.

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Advancing social and racial justice

"We see this bill as advancing both social and racial justice... Without this bill, many women will continue to be denied access to home birth midwives." - Judy Norsigian (founder, Our Bodies Ourselves) and Jo-Anna Rorie, CNM, MSN, MPH, FACNM, PhD, addressing misinformation about the bill for out-of-hospital birth access and safety.

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Broad coalition of civil rights, women's health, and midwifery organizations support the Massachusetts Bill for Out-of-Hospital Birth Access and Safety

Broad coalition endorses HB4655: ACLU MA, American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM), Amnesty International USA, Bay State Birth Coalition, Birth Rights Bar Association, Massachusetts League of Women Voters, Mass NOW, Midwives Alliance of North America (MANA), Moms Rising, Inc., NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, National Association of Certified Professional Midwives (NACPM), North American Registry of Midwives (NARM), Our Bodies Ourselves, Union of Minority Neighborhoods, and Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts.

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Powerful speech on home birth in Massachusetts: equity, access, and transforming the maternity care system

“It is not equitable for a profession that has so much to offer vulnerable populations to be accessible only to those who can pay out of pocket or take on thousands in debt… We have a viable opportunity to improve the state of home birth here.” - Diana Snyder at the Boston March for Moms/Improving Birth Sister Rally in Copley Square on May 6, 2018

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Action Alert: Time is running out to get the bill out of the Public Health Committee

The bill is being delayed AGAIN! We need everyone's help today! If the Public Health Committee does not act on this bill soon, we won't have another chance to pass it until 2020. We cannot do this without you. Use our easy tool to e-mail your state legislators. (Takes 1 minute.) Or, keep reading for details on how to MAKE 2 CALLS NOW for safe and accessible maternity care options in Massachusetts.

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Leading health, civil rights, and midwifery organizations support HB1189/SB1206

The following organizations dedicated to human rights, social justice, and public health recently renewed their support of HB1189/SB1206: ACLU MA, American College of Nurse Midwives, Amnesty International USA, Bay State Birth Coalition, Massachusetts League of Women Voters, Mass NOW, Midwives Alliance of North America, NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, National Association of Certified Professional Midwives, North American Registry of Midwives, Our Bodies Ourselves, Union of Minority Neighborhoods, Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts. Thank you for supporting out-of-hospital birth access and safety!

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