Pregnancy and childbirth deaths in the United States have been on the rise, according to Dr.
John Brownstein, the chief innovation officer at Boston Children’s Hospital.
While early data from the CDC for 2022 shows a decrease, officials remain concerned as pre-pandemic mortality rates were already high, the highest in decades.
The exact reasons for the high mortality rates in women are still unknown, but Brownstein notes the need for targeted intervention and equity to help women through pregnancy.
Factors such as substance abuse, obesity, and chronic conditions are also driving factors that need to be addressed.
COVID-19 also played a role in the increase of mortality rates as pregnant women had a higher risk of hospitalization and death, and low vaccination rates added to the concern.
Healthcare disparities and racism furthered complications for women of color.
Researchers found that non-Hispanic Black and Hispanic women had three times the mortality risk factors, and women over 40 also had a greater risk due to chronic conditions.