As the state responds to the high infant mortality rate, national reports have increasingly called attention to maternal deaths related to pregnancy, as well as severe maternal morbidity.
The executive budget included language supporting the pregnancy associated mortality review process (PAMR) in Ohio, including a representative committee.
The Center for Community Solutions began to explore this issue in Ohio and found that while we had a state pregnancy associated mortality review (PAMR) committee in practice, hosted by Ohio Department of Health (ODH) since 2010, the committee did not receive complete or timely data on these tragic events in Ohio. How will the approved #OHBudget address how maternal deaths are tracked and reported? Click To Tweet
We understood there was a potential policy solution, to ensure ODH receives timely data for the committee’s review process. We are now able to review infant mortality data quarterly which has resulted in targeted interventions where they are needed most. With a more robust process, supported in statute, the state can better monitor, understand and respond to trends to prevent maternal mortality among Ohio women.
With a more robust process, supported in statute, the state can better monitor, understand and respond to trends to prevent maternal mortality among Ohio women.
Minority Leader Emilia Sykes has brought much attention to this issue in the legislature leading up to the introduction of the budget. The executive budget included language supporting the PAMR process in Ohio, including a representative committee. The approved House version of the budget strengthened the as-introduced language, codifying the PAMR committee and adding privacy protections for the committee and data. The Senate maintained these modifications and additionally required more frequent public reporting – biannual as opposed to triannual.
Nationally, more than half of maternal deaths are considered preventable. These improvements are an important first step to the improved surveillance needed to ensure the health of Ohio mothers.