Tackling the Maternal Health Problem in America

Thanks Jennifer and thanks Paolo for your amazing dedication to moms and babies worldwide!

Jennifer James Online

Working on Maternal Health in America
When I travel and write about the global maternal health crisis I typically concentrate on the world’s poorest countries. In those countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa, that is where we see the highest maternal mortality rates (MMR). But right here in the United States, there are 18.5 deaths of women during pregnancy and childbirth per 100,000 live births. That is around 1751 American women per year according to the Centers for Disease Control. That number is from 2011 and it has gone up since then. That number may seem low when you think about poor countries’ MMR, but that number is astronomically high when compared to other industrialized countries. In fact, the United States has the highest maternal mortality rate of any industrialized country in the world, and yet we as Americans spend the most on health care.

Over the past twenty years, the maternal mortality rate in the United States has…

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