ENGAGE to Promote Economic Security for All American Women

Thank you for tuning in to our March 31st Velocity Index Series featuring U.S. Representative Lauren Underwood (IL-14th), Senior Vice President at Blue Cross Blue Shield Association Justine Handelman and Department Chair & Associate Professor at Temple University’s Lewis Katz School of Medicine Margot Savoy, MD, MPH and moderated by Politico Executive Health Care Editor Joanne Kenen.
As discussed, family health is a women’s economic issue and ENGAGE is here to fight every day to ensure women’s economic security.
In our Velocity Index series, there were several facts, figures, and resources mentioned, and we wanted to provide them all to you in one place so you’re ready to go out and talk to your friends, family, neighbors, and legislators to enact meaningful change for women.

  • Women have faced a disproportionate brunt of the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, of all workers who left the workforce by the end of Q4 of 2020, 80% were women.
  • Unfortunately, vaccination rates are plummeting which is especially troubling as vaccines can prevent 2-3 million deaths per year:
    • Childhood non-COVID vaccination doses have declined by 11 million during the pandemic.
    • Vaccine hesitancy and even opposition is growing during the pandemic.
  • Children living in communities with majority Black or Hispanic populations have lower vaccination completion rates (69% and 73%, respectively) compared to a completion rate of 80% for white Americans.
  • To learn more about Rep. Underwood’s Community Immunity During COVID-19 Act, which was introduced in the summer of 2020 and reintroduced this year in the 117th Congress, please click here.
    • To read Rep. Underwood’s letter to President Biden in support of this legislation, please click here.
  • Maternal health and mortality rates in the United States are at crisis levels:
    • In the United States, Black birthing people are 3-4 times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related complication through the first year than are white Americans.
    • The maternal mortality rate in the United States is rising while it falls in other industrialized countries.
    • 66% of all births by African-Americans in the United States are paid for by Medicaid.
      • 12 states have not expanded Medicaid eligibility under the the Affordable Care Act and it’s having a disproportionate impact on African-Americans.
    • To learn more about Rep. Underwood’s Black Maternal health Monnibus Act of 2021 and how it would combat the Black maternal health crisis in the United States, please click here.
  • Health care tips for all women and families:
    • If you have fallen behind on vaccinations or routine medical care, do not let that stop you from catching up.
    • If you do not currently have a primary care physician, start with your insurance plan — pick up your health insurance card and call the help number on the back and ask them to help you.
    • Embrace telemedicine! Telemedicine is here to stay during the pandemic and beyond, and it can be a tremendous help to take care of some of the routine parts of your in-person visits. Do not shy away from utilizing it!
    • Look for options such as BlueCross BlueShield’s Care Vans for vaccinations and other services in your community.


We can’t thank you enough for tuning in for the Velocity Index! To learn more about ENGAGE and our mission, click here. To join us and help create a positive future for women, click here.

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