Better Prenatal Care Needed

Maternal deaths could be prevented, experts say

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(HealthDay) -- Too many women are dying of pregnancy-related causes in the United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A recent summit focused on ways to improve the pregnancy mortality rate in the United States, according to an article from CNN. The risk of death during pregnancy has dropped over the past 50 years, but has not dropped significantly since 1982, according to the CDC figures.

As many as half of the deaths could have been prevented with better prenatal care, experts say. They say attention should be focused on particular ethnic groups. Black women, for example, are four times more likely than white women to die of pregnancy-related complications. Hispanic women are 1.7 times more likely to die. Other women at high risk include women older than 35, those who have had several children, those who receive no prenatal care and those who are unmarried, the report says.

Researchers are also trying to find out why heart disease is becoming a larger factor in these deaths, and they are investigating links to domestic violence and changes in the availability of health care.

To find out more about maternal health, you can read this information from the CDC. To find out how infant mortality is affected by race, you can read this information from the Healthy Start Association.

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