WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King announced that the Maine Department of Health and Human Services has received $576,824 to improve the health of Maine’s mothers and children. This funding was awarded through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Maternal and Child Health Services Program and will support efforts to lower maternal mortality, reduce infant mortality, and enhance the delivery of maternal care.
“Every Maine child deserves an opportunity to live a happy, healthy life – and this starts with access to high-quality, regular healthcare,” said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement. “This federal grant will help lower maternal mortality, improve the health of mothers and children across the state, and create opportunities for Maine people to succeed. We are grateful for this funding, and appreciate the continued dedication of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services to supporting the health of our state’s children and families.”
“These funds help provide the foundation that allows Maine people to live healthy lives,” said Maryann Harakall, Maternal and Child Health Director for the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. “They will make it possible for new parents, their children, and families to receive education and services related to maternal and child health when they are most needed.”
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services serves approximately one-third of the people of Maine, providing health care and social service support to children, families, the elderly, the disabled, people with mental illness or substance use disorders, and those living below the poverty level.
Senators Collins and King have long supported efforts to strengthen families and improve maternal health care. As a senior member of the Appropriations Committee, Senator Collins helped to secure a $25 million increase in funding for the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant Program in the Fiscal Year 2021 Labor and Health and Human Services Appropriations bill. Senators King and Collins cosponsored the Rural Maternal and Obstetric Modernization of Services (Rural MOMS) Act, a bipartisan bill that would improve data collection, expand services, and award funding to help ensure that new and expecting moms living in rural communities get the care they need. The United States has the worst rate of maternal deaths in the developed world and one of the highest rates of infant mortality.