A new, bipartisan bill will designate more resources to a particularly vulnerable population: veterans who are also mothers.
Called The Protecting Moms Who Served Act, the bill will allow the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to direct $15 million toward support for new moms, including childbirth and parenting classes, nutrition counseling, breast pumps and lactation support, reports KOLO News Now.
“Our women’s veterans are increasing every single year in the VAs nationwide and our maternity programs are growing with that, so we have a nice young population coming in. A lot of new moms, new families coming in," said Shana Schenck, manager of the veteran women program at the VA Sierra Nevada, to the television station.
The resources are especially pertinent given that women veterans have an increased risk of complications during pregnancy and postpartum, reports KOLO News Now. As part of the law, the government accountability office will also be required to study racial and ethnic disparities when looking at the maternal health of women.
“Our nation’s maternal health crisis impacts far too many women, including women veterans, and we know that these challenges are preventable,” stated Nevada U.S Senator Jacky Rosen in an email to the station. “This bipartisan legislation will take important steps to ensure that women veterans in Nevada and across the country have access to coordinated, high-quality maternity care from VA and non-VA facilities.”