The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a recent study finding that more than 80% of pregnancy-related deaths that occurred in 36 US states from 2017 to 2019 were preventable.
A review of pregnancy-related deaths in these states over the three-year period found that a total of 839 deaths were preventable out of the 996 deaths for which such determinations were made.
The CDC analyzed 1,018 pregnancy-related deaths overall, finding that mental health issues, hemorrhaging, and heart and coronary problems were the three leading causes of pregnancy-related deaths.
Mental health problems, including drug overdoses, accounted for 22.7% of deaths, hemorrhages 13.7% and heart and coronary problems 12.8%.
The leading causes of pregnancy-related death differ by ethnicity. Heart and coronary death topped among those identified as black, mental health issues topped among those identified as Hispanic and white, and hemorrhage topped among those identified as Asian.
Black Americans have been disproportionately affected. The group accounts for 13.8% of the US population but 31.4% of pregnancy-related deaths.
Data used in the analysis was acquired in the following states for a portion of one or more years from 2017 through 2019: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York (excluding New York), Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
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