Women in the US suffer a problem unique within the developed world: A startlingly disproportionate share are dying earlier than, during, or quickly after childbirth. And it’s dangerous for women of color.
According to a 2018 investigation by the Commonwealth supply, there have been 14 losses for every 100,000 pregnant women in 2015. And per research by ProPublica and NPR, 700 to 900 girls had died of childbirth-related complications in 2016. That’s higher than twice the maternal mortality fee in Canada, Sweden, and Germany, and much increased than that of any other developed nation. There’s additionally a significant racial disparity within the girls who’re affected: Black girls are currently dying at three to four instances the speed of white girls.
This difficulty is shocking, and it’s only gotten worse before now two decades. Because the maternal mortality price has risen, the issue has attracted increasing scrutiny from policymakers — together with the 2020 Democratic candidates.
Whereas just a few 2020ers, together with Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, and Kirsten Gillibrand, have laid out particular plans on the topic, candidates are more and more calling out the need to deal with this problem. And loads of voters are elevating the query at key coverage boards, corresponding to See the People, a gathering in Texas that cantered explicitly on girls of color.
Candidate proposals would goal a couple of gaps, together with the lack of federal data about why women are dying, the necessity for extra standardized hospital coaching to deal with problems during childbirth, and the necessity for implicit bias coaching to counter discrimination by physicians and medical establishments.
Several candidates additionally assist offering moms with expanded Medicaid protection, one thing that pregnant women are solely currently guaranteed for two months after childbirth, resulting in a sudden lack of medical insurance for a lot of new mother and father.
Given the importance of this public health crisis, it’s evident that combating maternal deaths should be on the forefront of any 2020 dialog about health care. The candidate and voter give attention to the difficulty is ensuring it is.