NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — As rumors continue to swirl around Kirsten Gillibrand and a possible 2020 presidential run, the New York senator spent Sunday advocating for new laws to protect mothers during childbirth.

The Democrat held a press conference to push for the Modernizing Obstetric Medicine Standards (MOMS) Act. The new legislation would attempt to prevent women from suffering from medical complications before, during and after pregnancy.

WEB EXTRA – Watch Sen. Gillibrand’s Entire Press Conference On The MOMS Act Here: 

Gillibrand said the number of mothers dying during childbirth is a public health crisis in New York.

“My bill would direct the Department of Health and Human Services to work with leading researchers and health care providers to issue standardized best practices to help reduce maternal mortality rates,” Gillibrand said. “We must solve the maternal mortality crisis and we must do everything in our power to end the racial disparities in our health care system.”

The numbers show that women of color are far more at risk for childbirth complications.

“Black women are estimated to be up to 12 times more likely to die during pregnancy and childbirth than white women,” according to a release from Gillibrand’s office.

According to the senator, New York state is suffering from a 60-percent increase in maternal mortality over the last 10 years.

Gillibrand said the legislation would create a grant program to provide hospitals with funding.

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