Letter: Reach Act will help save lives

Miranda Niemi

As a mother to two healthy children, I feel fortunate to have had access to medical care during my pregnancy and my children’s births.

My 8- and 12-year-old kids have had all of their shots and have been taken care of when they are sick. But not all families are as fortunate as mine. Each year, 5.9 million children under the age of 5 die from preventable causes, such as pneumonia, malnutrition and diarrhea. That’s 16,000 children dying every day, nearly half of them newborns.

Fortunately, our elected leaders are trying to do something about this. The Reach Every Mother and Child (Reach) Act, introduced in the Senate last year, focuses on the poorest and most vulnerable populations and would save the lives of 15 million children and 600,000 women within a generation. The Reach Act would help prevent those deaths by scaling up solutions that work, such as clean medical tools and training for health workers. Sen. Chuck Grassley recently became a co-sponsor of this bill. I urge Sen. Joni Ernst to join him because no parent should have to bury a child when there are ways to help them survive and thrive.

Miranda Niemi

Marion

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