When discussing public health and healthcare reform Monday on a podcast called “The Breakfast Club”, Democratic California Sen. Kamala Harris referenced a bill she proposed in August 2018 concerning the high maternal mortality rate of black women, stating that “black women are dying at 3 to 4 times higher rate, in connection with childbirth in America.”
She explains this phenomena by claiming “it is literally about racial bias in the healthcare delivery system.”
Harris went on to characterize the components of her 2018 bill and how it would solve this problem. “And so I have an initiative, it’s a bill, that says we need to train medical schools and doctors on how to take black women seriously, when they walk through that hospital door. And talk about their illness, and take them seriously and not reject their complaints or thing of them as hysterical,” she explained. (RELATED: Kamala Harris Admits To Smoking Weed—She Even Inhaled)
Harris has said that her bill, the “Maternal Care Access and Reducing Emergencies (CARE) Act”, is “a step towards ensuring that all women have access to culturally competent, holistic care and to address the implicit biases in our system.” (RELATED: Kamala Harris Made Her First Campaign Speech All About Race)
Here are the objectives of the bill, according to Kamala Harris’ senatorial website:
The Maternal CARE Act:
- Creates two new grant programs focused on reducing racial health disparities in maternal health:
- Implicit Bias Training Grants: Addresses implicit bias—bias in judgement or behavior resulting from implicit attitudes and stereotypes—by establishing competitive grants directed to medical schools, nursing schools, and other health professionals training programs to support implicit bias training. Priority is given for training in obstetrics and gynecology.
- Pregnancy Medical Home Demonstration Project: Establishes a demonstration project to assist up to 10 states with implementing and sustaining pregnancy medical home (PMH) programs to incentivize maternal health care providers to deliver integrated health care services to pregnant women and new mothers and reduce adverse maternal health outcomes, maternal deaths, and racial health disparities in maternal mortality and morbidity.
- Directs the National Academy of Medicine to study and make recommendations for incorporating bias recognition in clinical skills testing for U.S. medical schools.