Most deaths among pregnant women and new mothers in the United States are preventable, according to a new report.
For more than 4 in 5 women who died during pregnancy, childbirth or up to one year postpartum – more than 84% – the death could have been prevented by “reasonable changes” by health care providers, the community, patients or others.
The data released Monday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is based on detailed assessments of more than 1,000 pregnancy-related deaths between 2017 and 2019.
Analyzes pre-Covid-19 pandemic and Roe v. It takes place before the US Supreme Court’s ruling that struck down Wade and the federal right to abortion. Since then, maternal mortality has worsened in the US.
A study published in June found that maternal deaths rose during the first year of the pandemic, especially among Hispanic and black women.
Those researchers found that there were 25 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births between April and December 2020, a 33% increase from the rate of 19 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in the previous two years.
The US is an outlier when it comes to maternal mortality, with higher rates than other wealthy nations. Black women in the US are three times more likely to die than white women in the US, and Native American women are twice as likely to die from pregnancy-related causes.
“Too many women experience pain, neglect and loss during what should be one of the happiest times of their lives,” Vice President Kamala Harris wrote in a letter introducing the Biden administration’s “Action to Address the Maternal Health Crisis.” in June
The plan has five major goals that aim to make the US “the best country in the world to have a baby,” including better data on maternal health, a diversified health care workforce that cares for women during childbirth, and better access. including attention, behavior and mental health.
The data released Monday by the CDC is based on analyzes by the Maternal Mortality Review Panels, which are intended to help identify recommendations to prevent deaths.
They found that more than half (53%) of pregnancy-related deaths occurred more than a week after birth. About 1 in 5 (22%) women died during pregnancy, and about 1 in 8 (13%) died on the day of delivery.
Mental health conditions were the leading cause of pregnancy-related deaths, contributing to more than 1 in 5 deaths among pregnant women and new mothers. For black women, heart disease was the most common cause of death, and bleeding was the most common cause for Asian women.
Based on these findings, examples of the review boards’ prevention recommendations include better access to insurance coverage to improve prenatal care and postpregnancy follow-up, better transportation options, and better referral and coordination systems.
“Everyone can help prevent pregnancy-related deaths,” the CDC said in a news release.
“Health systems, communities, families and other support systems need to be aware of the serious pregnancy-related complications that can occur during and after pregnancy. Listen to the concerns of people who are pregnant and have been pregnant in the past year and help them get the care they need.”