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Kelly’s Bipartisan Bill to Reduce Stillbirth Rates Gains Traction

Washington, D.C.-(ENEWSPF)- The House Energy and Commerce Committee Health Subcommittee passed the Stillbirth Health Improvement and Education (SHINE) for Autumn Act (H.R. 5012). U.S. Representatives Robin Kelly (IL-02), Young Kim (CA-40), Kathy Castor (FL-14), and Dave Joyce (OH-14) led the effort.

This bipartisan bill aims to prevent stillbirth. It will do so through improved data collection, research, education, and awareness. This starts by developing the first comprehensive, federal-state partnership to reduce U.S. stillbirth rates. 

According to the CDC, stillbirth affects 1 in 170 pregnancies, with over 21,000 babies born still each year, or 57 babies dying every day. In the United States, the annual number of stillbirths far exceeds the number of deaths among children aged 0-14 years from accidents, preterm birth, SIDS, drownings, fire, and flu combined. 

Rep. Robin Kelly on the Risk of Stillbirth

“Mitigating the risk of stillbirth and offering support to mothers and families who have suffered such a loss is essential to improving maternal and infant health in the United States. I’m proud that the Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee has recognized the importance of improving research and awareness of maternal care to prevent stillbirth and passed the SHINE For Autum Act,” said Rep. Robin Kelly, co-chair of the Maternity Care Caucus. “As a co-chair of the Maternity Care Caucus, I’m proud to join my colleague Rep. Young Kim. We will identify bipartisan policies to give more families the chance to thrive. Every mother deserves a healthy pregnancy and a happy life with her baby. I’m committed to ending the maternal health crisis and getting mothers and babies the care they need.” 

Rep., Young Kim, Co-Chair of Maternity Care Caucus

“I have experienced firsthand the difficulties of pregnancy. I have grieved with my daughters through the devastation of losing a baby. Supporting moms, women, and babies is personal to me,” said Rep. Young Kim, co-chair of the Maternity Care Caucus. “The SHINE for Autumn Act will equip us with the resources, research, and education needed to reduce stillbirths, support our healthcare workforce, and allow women to have healthy pregnancies. I am proud to lead this bipartisan and commonsense bill that will bring hope for moms and families.” 

Rep. Kathy Castor

“Together, we can address the serious maternal and infant health crisis. This is tearing families apart and causing significant pain and trauma,” said Rep. Kathy Castor. “Nearly one out of every four stillbirths is preventable. Black women are more than twice as likely to experience stillbirth as White women. We need to act to dramatically. We can improve outcomes for mothers and babies and address long-standing disparities among racial and ethnic groups. I trust that with the bipartisan work of my colleagues, Reps. Kim, Kelly, and Joyce, we will see the SHINE for Autumn Act signed into law. Today’s vote was an important step forward toward that goal.” 

Rep. Dave Joyce: Ohio has one of the country’s highest stillbirth rates.

“For too long, Ohio has had one of the country’s highest stillbirth rates,” said Rep. Dave Joyce. “We must continue to fund research. This will ensure no mother or family has to endure this devastating, avoidable loss of life. I am proud to see the SHINE for Autumn Act pass out of the House Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee with bipartisan support.” 

The SHINE for Autumn Act aims to support stillbirth data, research, and education by allowing for:  

  • Grants to states to support data collection, assessment, and reporting on stillbirth and stillbirth risk factors; 
  • The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), in coordination with health care providers, to develop guidelines and educational materials for state departments of health and statistics on stillbirth data collection, data sharing, and educational materials on stillbirth; 
  • The incorporation of the Perinatal Pathology Fellowship Program at the NIH to fund research fellowships on stillbirth, including research and training on fetal autopsies and improved education, research, and data collection; and,  
  • A report on the effectiveness of the Perinatal Pathology Fellowship Program after five years of enactment. 

U.S. Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced the SHINE for Autumn Act in the Senate.

This is news from Congresswoman Robin Kelly’s office.