High Maternal Mortality Rates in New York Demand Increased Investment from State

February 11, 2019
Contact: Liza Dee, [email protected]

Statement from Andrea Miller, president of the National Institute for Reproductive Health (NIRH)

New York – The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) District II today called for renewed action in combatting the maternal mortality rate, asking New York State to create a maternal mortality review board to assess each death and develop prevention strategies. Despite considering itself a beacon for reproductive health, rights, and justice, New York’s maternal mortality rate currently ranks it just 30th out of 50 states. Between 2008 and 2012, life-threatening complications of delivery increased by more than 28 percent.

Following Governor Cuomo’s release of an executive budget including funding for maternal mortality prevention, the National Institute for Reproductive Health joins ACOG District II in asking state legislators to ensure passage of a review board anchored by the promise of confidentiality for women and families.

“Despite our world-renowned medical institutions and progressive policies ensuring women’s access to comprehensive reproductive health care, New York continues to lag behind the majority of U.S. when it comes to maternal mortality — with low-income women and women of color disproportionately impacted,” said Andrea Miller, president of the National Institute for Reproductive Health. “NIRH joins ACOG District II and its partners in calling on our state legislators to ensure funding for a maternal mortality review board charged with swiftly combatting these dismal rates. In New York State – and across the country – every woman deserves access to the highest quality reproductive care and the freedom to make her own decisions about her body, life and future.”


The National Institute for Reproductive Health builds power at the state and local level to change public policy, galvanize public support, and normalize women’s decisions about abortion and contraception.

Using a partnership model, NIRH provides state and local advocates with strategic guidance, hands-on support, and funding to create national change from the ground up. We form strategic partnerships with a wide range of organizations to directly impact the reproductive health and lives of women across the country. Each year, NIRH works in at least 20 states and more than a dozen localities; to date, NIRH has partnered with more than 150 reproductive health, rights, and justice organizations in 39 states and 56 localities across the country.