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New national campaign launched to curb maternal mortalities

By WITW Staff on May 12, 2016

The maternal mortality rate in the U.S. has been a much-discussed problem onstage at Women in the World events. Maternal death rates in some parts of the U.S. are on par with those seen in sub-Saharan Africa and statistics show they’re continuing to rise. These grim figures are part of the motivation behind a new national campaign launched by the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs (AMCHP), a public health advocacy group, and the CDC to turn around the number of mothers dying in the U.S. during childbirth.

The groups are calling on state governments to take the lead by establishing mother mortality panels, if they aren’t already in existence. The panels will consist of medical and forensic experts who would study maternal mortalities over time, and begin to identify trends or otherwise preventable systemic problems that could led to the development of treatments and strategies to curb maternal mortalities.

Many states already have mother mortality panels, but the CDC and AMCHP are calling for a standardized system for sharing data. Currently, the states that do have such panels aren’t coordinated and don’t officially share data among themselves. Some studies have suggested that up to one-third of maternal deaths in the U.S. are preventable, and the groups are hoping that a more concerted effort to define the problem with help do just that.

Read the full story at PBS Newshour.


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