Kirk introduces Improving Access to Maternity Care Act
Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) has joined forces with Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) and Reps. Michael C. Burgess (R-TX) and Lois Capps (D-CA) in introducing the Improving Access to Maternity Care Act.
"In Illinois, there is only one OB-GYN for every 3,660 women throughout the state, and many of our obstetric hospitals are understaffed," Kirk said. "Though 63 new OB-GYNs are trained annually in Illinois, the number of retiring providers is just as high."
The bill aims to reduce reduce professional maternity care shortages by incentivizing providers to practice in rural and underserved areas. The legislation would also create a maternity care health professional shortage designation and would allow prenatal care providers to apply for up to $50,000 in student loan repayment benefits in exchange for at least two years of service in an area experiencing care shortages.
“Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we’ve seen historic gains when it comes to providing maternity care coverage for women and families across America,” Baldwin said. "The Improving Access to Maternity Care Act will identify areas of shortage and inadequate access to help target resources so providers can deliver the type of care that communities in Wisconsin and across our country so desperately need."