State advocacy

The March of Dimes volunteers and staff work to influence both legislative and regulatory activities in each state, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico - serving as powerful voices for the needs of pregnant women, infants, children and families.  Our efforts span the full range of our annual Advocacy & Government Affairs priorities, including access to care, research and surveillance, prevention and education, and issues important to tax-exempt organizations.

State advocacy priorities and wins 2016

View our interactive map to learn more about policy priorities and wins in your state.

In 2016, the March of Dimes secured 110 state or local legislative and regulatory wins across a wide range of Foundation-wide priorities to improve the health of women and children. California led the way with 14 victories, an all-time high shared with only one other state (Washington had 14 wins in 2015). Tennessee and Vermont secured eight wins each with Georgia, Illinois and New York not far behind with seven each.

  • We are getting more newborns screened for more conditions: Screening all newborns for conditions on the Recommended Uniform Screening Panel (RUSP) was established in the following states: New Hampshire, Vermont, Georgia, Missouri, Mississippi, Florida, Louisiana, Maryland and Washington.
  • We are saving more infants from drug-exposure: March of Dimes worked to pass important initiatives to prevent newborns from being born exposed to opioids and other drugs in Alabama, Colorado, Delaware, Massachusetts, Illinois, Tennessee and Vermont.
  • We are decreasing the risk of premature births: New tobacco-related initiatives (including raising the legal age to purchase tobacco products to 21) were passed in California, Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, North Carolina, and Vermont to help ensure fewer pregnant women and babies are harmed by tobacco and nicotine products.

From increasing health coverage options through Medicaid, birth spacing, and pregnancy as a qualifying life event and promoting public health programs such as newborn screening, smoking cessation, immunizations, home visiting, pregnancy discrimination and pregnancy-related drug use, March of Dimes states scored victories for state public policies to improve birth outcomes and newborn health.

Below are just a few examples of fact sheets and issue briefs used in successful state advocacy efforts.


See also: Advocacy and Government Affairs Issues and PrioritiesMarch of Dimes Foundation Data Book for Policy Makers and Peristats.