State Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) today announced legislation that would designate the month of May in Ohio “Maternal Mortality Awareness Month” to recognize the Ohio mothers who die each year from pregnancy related complications.
The number of Ohio mothers who die from pregnancy related complications has increased threefold from a decade ago. The average death rate in 2016, according to the Ohio Department of Health, is 85 women per 100,000 live births.
“Ohio has the opportunity to be a leader in maternal mortality awareness,” said Sykes. “By designating a month for awareness, we will bring light to the various causes of maternal mortality, develop new ideas and protocols to limit and eliminate pregnancy related death, and show the women of Ohio that the state supports their health and well-being during and after pregnancy.”
Sykes, who serves as the House Minority Whip, represents Ohio’s 34th House district, which includes Akron and parts of Cuyahoga Falls and Bath Township.