Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., joined by, from left, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., and Majority Whip John Cornyn, R-Texas, meets with reporters following a closed-door strategy session, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, June 20, 2017. Sen. McConnell says Republicans will have a "discussion draft" of a GOP-only bill scuttling former President Barack Obama's health care law by Thursday. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

How the Senate’s Health Care Bill Will Seriously Hurt Black Women

June 30, 2017

Senate Republicans recently released a health care bill that the Congressional Budget Office estimates would result in 22 million people losing their insurance coverage by 2026, including 15 million who are insured by Medicaid, which largely covers low-income Americans. Like so many conservative policies, these health care proposals would cause the most harm to America’s most vulnerable — including Black mothers.

As an advocate for Black reproductive and maternal health, and chair of the steering committee of the Black Mamas Matter Alliance, I am especially concerned about how Republican efforts to “fix health care” will worsen health outcomes for Black women, one of the United States’ most vulnerable populations. The newStatus of Black Women in the United States report shows that despite our civic engagement and voter turnout, Black women continue to be underpaid, over-imprisoned, live in poverty and are in poorer health than their white counterparts. And Black moms are three times more likely than white moms to die from pregnancy-related causes and are also at greater risk of pregnancy-related injury and death. We know that we need greater access to care, not less.


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