‘It’s a crisis’: Maternal health care disappears for millions

‘It’s a crisis’: Maternal health care disappears for millions

Aug 01, 2023 by Health Care - Politico

Key Facts

  • New data from the nonpartisan health advocacy group March of Dimes shows that the U.S. — which already has the worst maternal mortality rate among developed nations — saw a 4 percent decline in hospitals with labor and delivery services between 2019 and 2020.
  • March of Dimes found that nearly a third of women in Alabama already have no birthing hospital within a 30-minute drive and for some residents, the nearest hospital is more than 70 minutes away — factors the group said raised the risk for “maternal morbidity and adverse infant outcomes, such as stillbirth and NICU admission.”
  • The problem is similar in Wyoming, where five of the state’s 23 counties are maternity care deserts and more than 15 percent of residents have no hospital with labor and delivery services within 30 minutes.
  • So residents and young doctors are saying: ‘Why would I go there and deal with that?’” Idaho saw a 12.5 percent decrease in the number of birthing hospitals in the state between 2019 and 2020, and nearly 30 percent of the state is considered a maternal health desert, according to March of Dimes.

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