maternal mortality

Tori Bowie, a 2016 US Olympian, died from complications of childbirth; Serena Williams experienced a pulmonary embolism after delivery that was initially ignored. According to the World in Data, US maternal mortality per 100,000 live births lies “comfortably” less than in Grenada but more than in Latvia or Puerto Rico. Let’s get behind the headlines, and delve deeper into a “preventable” problem.
Our country continues to be plagued by maternal deaths, and there are disparities in outcomes when stratified by race or ethnicity. So what’s going on? A new study that looks back over 18 years searches for some answers.
From 1986 to the present, the CDC has monitored pregnancy-related deaths. Surveillance data show a steadily increasing number of reported pregnancy related deaths up to 2012. The increase on its own may not turn heads, but in a global context, it depicts a slowly growing problem when compared to figures across other developed countries. And even more worrisome, experts have been unable to clearly identify the overall cause for the increase.