Preemie Reauthorization Act
Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Representatives Anna Eshoo (D-CA), and Leonard Lance (R-NJ)
The original PREEMIE Act (P.L. 109-450), signed into law on December 22, 2006 brought the first-ever national focus to prematurity prevention. The Surgeon General’s Conference on the Prevention of Preterm Birth created by the Act generated a public-private agenda to spur innovative research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and support evidence-based interventions to prevent preterm birth. Due to the momentum of the 2006 PREEMIE Act, Congress passed and the President signed the PREEMIE Reauthorization Act into law on November 27, 2013.
Throughout the process, the March of Dimes, worked closely with its Prematurity Campaign Partners--the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses--and many other organizations advocating for the enactment. Full funding for the activities authorized by the PREEMIE Act is essential. See FY15 Preterm Birth Funding Fact Sheet.
"The PREEMIE Act represents the federal government's commitment to reducing the devastating toll of preterm birth," stated Dr. Jennifer L. Howse, President of the March of Dimes. "By signing this bill into law, President Obama has enabled vital research and education on the prevention of prematurity to continue. The March of Dimes is deeply grateful to him, as well as the authors of the PREEMIE Act – Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Representatives Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Leonard Lance (R-NJ) – for their tireless efforts to ensure that no baby is born too soon.” -- November 27, 2013
Summary of key provisions
The PREEMIE Reauthorization Act (P.L. 113-55) reauthorizes P.L. 109-450 and expands research, education and intervention activities related to preterm birth and infant mortality.
SECTION 1: SHORT TITLE
Names the legislation the “The PREEMIE Reauthorization Act”
SECTION 2: RESEARCH AND ACTIVITIES AT THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION
- Conducts etiologic and epidemiologic studies on the clinical, biological, social, environmental, genetic, and behavioral factors related to preterm birth.
- Improves national data to track the burden of preterm birth.
- Develops methods to better understand and prevent late preterm births.
- Requires CDC to submit a report to Congress regarding the progress and results of the studies.
Reauthorizes $1.88 million for each of fiscal years FY 2014 – 2018
SECTION 3: RESEARCH AND ACTIVITIES AT THE HEALTH RESOURCES AND SERVICES ADMINISTRATION
- Adds prenatal care for high risk pregnancies to the HRSA telehealth network grant program.
- Reauthorizes HRSA health care provider education demonstration project aimed at improving preterm birth education and the treatment and outcomes for babies born preterm.
Reauthorizes $1.9 million for each of fiscal years 2014 – 2018
SECTION 4: OTHER ACTIVITIES
- Advisory Committee on Infant Mortality: Strikes the HHS Interagency Coordinating Council on Prematurity and Low Birth Weight and authorizes the existing Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Infant Mortality to provide recommendations to the Secretary including:
- Supporting strategies to increase healthy pregnancies and reduce preterm birth rates through research, programs and education.
- Coordinating federal programs designed to reduce infant mortality.
- Implementing the Healthy Start program and Healthy People 2020 infant mortality objectives.
- Requiring the Advisory Committee to develop a plan for conducting and supporting research, education and programs on preterm birth within the first year after enactment.
- Patient Safety Studies and Report: Requires the Secretary to coordinate existing studies on hospital readmissions of preterm infants and to report on recommendations within one year of the date of enactment.