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August, 16

Pregnant Woman’s Death Rate Skyrockets During Pandemic – Research

According to new research, death rates for pregnant women or those who had recently delivered in the United States increased dramatically during the first year of the pandemic.

While overall death rates in the United States increased by 16 percent in 2020, it was officially 18 percent for pregnant and early postpartum women, according to data from the United States National Center for Health Statistics.

But that’s not the whole story: Black and Hispanic women saw even higher increases.

When the researchers compared maternal death data from 2018 to March 2020, when the pandemic began, to April through December 2020, they discovered large spikes in maternal death – about 33% in maternal deaths and 41% in late maternal deaths.

“The increase was driven by deaths after the start of the pandemic,” said study co-author Marie Thoma, an assistant professor of family science at the University of the Maryland School of Public Health. She was quoted in a university press release.

The researchers also discovered new disparities, such as a 40% increase in already high rates for Black women and a 74% increase in previously lower rates for Hispanic women.

“For the first time in more than a decade, the maternal mortality rate for Hispanic women during the pandemic was higher than that for non-Hispanic white women,” said co-author Eugene Declercq, a professor of community health sciences at Boston University’s School of Public Health.

According to the study, COVID was listed as a secondary cause of death in nearly 15% of maternal deaths in the last nine months of 2020. It was a factor in the birth of 32 percent of Hispanic, nearly 13 percent of Black, and 7 percent of white women.

The majority of the increases were attributed to COVID-19-related conditions, such as respiratory or viral infection, or conditions exacerbated by the virus, such as diabetes and heart disease. According to the authors, delayed prenatal care during the pandemic may have resulted in risk factors not being detected.

“We need more detailed data on the specific causes of maternal deaths overall, as well as those linked to COVID-19,” Thoma said. “Potentially, we could see improvements in 2021 as a result of vaccine rollouts and the extension of postpartum care provided to Medicaid recipients in some states as part of the American Rescue Act of 2021. We will continue to investigate this.”

The findings were published in a research letter in JAMA Network Open on June 28.

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According to new research, death rates for pregnant women or those who had recently delivered in the United States increased dramatically during the first year of the pandemic.

While overall death rates in the United States increased by 16 percent in 2020, it was officially 18 percent for pregnant and early postpartum women, according to data from the United States National Center for Health Statistics.

But that’s not the whole story: Black and Hispanic women saw even higher increases.

When the researchers compared maternal death data from 2018 to March 2020, when the pandemic began, to April through December 2020, they discovered large spikes in maternal death – about 33% in maternal deaths and 41% in late maternal deaths.

“The increase was driven by deaths after the start of the pandemic,” said study co-author Marie Thoma, an assistant professor of family science at the University of the Maryland School of Public Health. She was quoted in a university press release.

The researchers also discovered new disparities, such as a 40% increase in already high rates for Black women and a 74% increase in previously lower rates for Hispanic women.

“For the first time in more than a decade, the maternal mortality rate for Hispanic women during the pandemic was higher than that for non-Hispanic white women,” said co-author Eugene Declercq, a professor of community health sciences at Boston University’s School of Public Health.

According to the study, COVID was listed as a secondary cause of death in nearly 15% of maternal deaths in the last nine months of 2020. It was a factor in the birth of 32 percent of Hispanic, nearly 13 percent of Black, and 7 percent of white women.

The majority of the increases were attributed to COVID-19-related conditions, such as respiratory or viral infection, or conditions exacerbated by the virus, such as diabetes and heart disease. According to the authors, delayed prenatal care during the pandemic may have resulted in risk factors not being detected.

“We need more detailed data on the specific causes of maternal deaths overall, as well as those linked to COVID-19,” Thoma said. “Potentially, we could see improvements in 2021 as a result of vaccine rollouts and the extension of postpartum care provided to Medicaid recipients in some states as part of the American Rescue Act of 2021. We will continue to investigate this.”

The findings were published in a research letter in JAMA Network Open on June 28.

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