State advocacy

The March of Dimes volunteers and staff work to influence both legislative and regulatory activities in each state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico - serving as powerful voices for the needs of pregnant women, infants, children and families.  Our efforts span the full range of our annual Advocacy & Government Affairs priorities, including access to care, research and surveillance, prevention and education, and issues important to tax-exempt organizations.

State advocacy priorities and wins 2016

View our interactive map to learn more about policy priorities and wins in your state. Download March of Dimes State Advocacy Agenda 2018 here. 

In 2018, March of Dimes volunteers, families, and staff across the nation are advocating for policy initiatives to improve the health of mothers and babies across the nation by preventing prematurity, birth defects, and infant mortality. 

These policy initiatives include raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco from 18 to 21 years of age, improved resources and support for maternal mental health, protecting access to health care, and establishing state Maternal Mortality Review Committees (MMRC).

Maternal mortality is the death of a woman as a result of pregnancy or childbirth. The rate of maternal mortality is rising in the United States, while other high-income countries have seen declining maternal deaths. Some causes of preventable deaths among pregnant women and new mothers include preeclampsia, heart conditions, and hemorrhage (uncontrolled bleeding). 

Maternal Mortality Review Committees (MMRC) conduct multi-disciplinary reviews of pregnancy-related deaths, pregnancy-associated deaths, and incidents of severe maternal morbidity. These committees strive to understand the contributing factors of maternal death and what opportunities exist to prevent further loss of maternal life.

This year, the March of Dimes in Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, Virginia, New York, Oregon, and Pennsylvania are advocating to develop statewide Maternal Mortality Review Committees.  

In Georgia, March of Dimes successfully advocated to secure $2 million in funding for maternal mortality to prevent postpartum hemorrhage, the state’s top cause of maternal death.

The March of Dimes is committed to working with state policymakers and stakeholders across the country to establish, maintain, or expand the work of Maternal Mortality Review Committees.

Below are just a few examples of fact sheets and issue briefs used in successful state advocacy efforts.

See also: Advocacy and Government Affairs Issues and Priorities, State Advocacy Priorities & Wins MapFederal advocacyMarch of Dimes Data Book for Policy Makers and Peristats.