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    It's Here!  

    The Advocacy & Government Affairs Committee hosted a preconference session called "Access to Progesterone for Prematurity Prevention: A Quality Improvement Collaborative" at the New York State Perinatal Association's annual conference in Albany this past June. The session brought together leaders in maternal and infant health from across New York State to discuss the utilization of progesterone therapies to reduce preterm labor. Participants identified barriers to utilization and developed a list of action items designed to advance this very important conversation. Check out the recently released report today!  

    Many thanks to the Advocacy & Government Affairs Committee and the New York State Perinatal Association for their commitment to making this session happen!     

    Issue Highlight: Progesterone

    The United States has the highest preterm birth rate of any industrialized country. Preterm birth - a birth that occurs before 37 weeks gestation - affects nearly 500,000 babies born in our nation each year (i.e., 1 in 9 babies is born preterm). And of those 500,000 babies born preterm in the U.S., 5.7% are delivered in New York.

    Progesterone is a hormone that plays a key role during pregnancy. It helps the uterus grow and keeps it from having contractions. Progesterone also helps a woman’s breasts get ready to make breast milk and helps a woman’s lungs work harder to produce enough oxygen for her and her growing baby. Progesterone therapies, like vaginal gels and injections, have been proven to help reduce preterm birth for some women.

    • Progesterone gel can be used when a woman has a short cervix and is pregnant with just one baby. The gel comes in an applicator that looks like a tampon and is applied daily from 20 weeks through 37 weeks of pregnancy. 
    • Progesterone injections can be used when a woman has had a prior spontaneous preterm birth and is currently pregnant with just one baby. Weekly progesterone injections must be started between 16 and 24 weeks of pregnancy and continue through 37 weeks of pregnancy. 

    Get more information about progesterone here.  

    2014 - 2015 Budget Timeline:

    • Completed! - The Division of  the Budget sends Agency Call Letter to all agency heads. Agency heads submit budget requests that comply with instructions in the Agency Call Letter to the Division of the Budget.
    • Completed! - Governor Cuomo presents Executive Budget proposal to legislature. 
    • Completed!  - New York State Senate and Assembly finalize negotiations and pass budget bills. The 2014-2015 budget bills passed by both the New York Senate and Assembly include the following provisions:
      • $3 million in new funding for Nurse-Family Partnership
      • Elimination of 6-month waiting period for previously insured children to enroll in New York's Child Health Plus
      • Extension through 2017 of previously enacted income and benefit expansions to New York's Child Health Plus
      • Funding for municipalities to provide prenatal care to uninsured women
    • Completed! - Governor Cuomo reviews budget bills passed by the legislature – may use line item veto.
    • Completed! - Enacted Budget.
      • The enacted budget includes the four provisions discussed above!

    Stay Informed:

    Join the March of Dimes advocacy network to receive occasional emails about key legislation important to moms and babies. The advocacy network is made up of volunteers and staff who promote the March of Dimes mission by contacting the governor and state legislators in response to New York Chapter action alerts. We need your help - every voice makes a difference!

    Do you know who represents you in the U.S. Senate or the New York State Assembly?  Find out by joining the March of Dimes advocacy network!

    Visit http://www.marchofdimes.com/advocacy/actioncenter.html to register! 

    Did you know...

    • March of Dimes is working with the Ohio Perinatal Quality Collaborative to develop and implement a statewide "Progesterone Project" in Ohio.
    • Harold Iselin, an outstanding advocate for women and children in New York State, is this year's recipient of the Distinguished Service Award! Join us at the NENY Division's Signature Chefs Auction on Tuesday, October 21 at the Canfield Casino in Saratoga Springs to celebrate Harold's accomplishments. 
    • The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued new Enforcement Guidance regarding pregnancy discrimination this July. This is the first comprehensive update to the EEOC's Pregnancy Discrimination Guidance since 1983.


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