Legislation to Prevent Stillbirth Presented in Senate Health and Human Services Committee

ST. PAUL, Minn. — On Wednesday, March 27th, the Senate Health and Human Services Committee heard Senate File 1303, a bill authored by Senator Susan Pha (DFL-Brooklyn Park). The bill implements a fetal movement tracking pilot program in an effort to prevent stillbirth in Minnesota. Fetal movement tracking is a method for expectant parents to understand their baby’s movement, notice when there is a change in movement, and seek medical care and evaluation.

“Losing a baby so close to their due date is incredibly devastating.” said Senator Pha. “Fetal movement tracking is a proven strategy to prevent stillbirth, and we need to ensure every parent understands that monitoring their baby’s movement during the third trimester is important for a healthy birth. This program would especially support BIPOC communities, who disproportionately experience stillbirth. Let’s ensure that Minnesota families bring their healthy babies home.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 1 out of 175 pregnancies end in stillbirth. That number climbs to 1 out of 133 for Native American pregnancies and 1 out of 101 for Black pregnancies.

Iowa adopted a similar program over a decade ago. One study showed that from 2008-2018, Iowa saw a 32% reduction in stillbirths while the rest of the nation stayed relatively stagnant. 

The Senate Health and Human Services Committee laid the bill over for possible inclusion in a future omnibus bill. You can watch the entire presentation here.

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Senator Susan Pha represents Senate District 38 which includes Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park, and Osseo. She is vice chair of the Capital Investment Committee and also serves on the Housing and Homelessness Prevention Committee.

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