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No Mother’s Day 2012 | Maternal Fatalities Rise in the US

Every 90 seconds, somewhere in the world, a woman dies from a pregnancy-related complication. This isn’t just a “third world” problem. The United States currently ranks 50th in the world for maternal health. We used to rank 41st. Women here experience higher rates of maternal death than those in nearly all European countries, Canada and several countries in the Middle East and Asia. In addition, the U.S. numbers may be depressed as there are no reporting requirements for maternal deaths.

For these women and their families, there is no Mother’s Day. That’s why this year, the maternal health advocacy organization Every Mother Counts is asking you, women and men, to act in solidarity on Mother’s Day to raise awareness and help change the lives of millions of women who will otherwise die becoming mothers.

No Mothers Day

According the the World Health Organization’s Trends in Maternal Mortality Report:

• Every 90 seconds a woman dies from a pregnancy related death, that’s 1,000 women a day
• 90 percent of these deaths are preventable
• 50 percent of all maternal deaths take place during the first 48 hours after delivery.
Seven million women a year suffer critical complications. For every woman that dies, another 20 experience debilitating and life threatening harm.

The largest number of United States maternal deaths belong to those women who are either in the low-income bracket and/or of color (African American women are four times as likely as Caucasian women to die in childbirth in the United States). Nearly 13 million women of reproductive age (15 to 44), or one in five, have no health insurance. Minorities account for just under one-third of all women in the US A  (32 percent) but over half (51 percent) of uninsured women.

During an interview about this report, Larry Cox, Executive Director of Amnesty International put it this way:

“This country’s extraordinary record of medical advancement makes its haphazard approach to maternal care all the more scandalous and disgraceful,” said Larry Cox, executive director of Amnesty International USA. “Good maternal care should not be considered a luxury available only to those who can access the best hospitals and the best doctors. Women should not die in the richest country on earth from preventable complications and emergencies.”

There are four primary reasons why women are dying:
• Severe bleeding after childbirth,
• Infections,
• Hypertensive disorders,
• Unsafe abortion.

There is one point by Larry that I would like to emphasize:

“Women should not die in the richest country on earth from preventable complications and emergencies.”

Now, to add to the growing numbers of maternal deaths in the United States, we bring in the politicians and legislators that feel they are more qualified than a doctor on deciding upon women’s health care.

Imagine what our numbers could drop down to if women of all races, socioeconomic backgrounds, and religion were provided with birth control, proper sex education, and for those rare times, abortions performed by a legitimate doctor – not in a backroom of a roach-infested motel.

Remember… November 5th, 2012… vote the anti-women’s reproductive rights officials OUT of office, and most certainly do not vote any newbies in.

Source: Huffington Post


  1. Seeing this post is another one of those very disturbing moments when I’m waiting for Rod Serling to introduce the story, because surely I must have just stepped into The Twilight Zone when I read that the wealthiest nation on earth ranks 50th for maternal health.

    While I have complete sympathy for the issue and the cause to raise awareness about this tragic and deplorable situation, I’m having a problem with the strategy here of mothers going silent on Mothers Day to make a statement. I don’t think that mothers should be going silent, but instead they should be taking to the streets on Mothers Day to shout and yell as loudly as they possibly can, to demand the changes needed to reverse this tragic travesty in America, where only mothers with enough money are far more likely to give birth safely, or to survive giving birth.

  2. Another example of the stupidity engendered by our puritan and biblical “morality”. What mediocre pre-natal and natal care available in the US is often required to be means tested. Perish the thought we just provide useful care because it’s for the good of the country.

    Decades back, France went through this discussion and simply decided complete pre-natal care would be available to every woman in the country. End of discussion.

    They realized all the crap arguments about what if x-number of women immigrated for care or what if a few well-off women participated when they could afford their own care, blah, blah, blah…if you added it all up, the cost of having obstetrics coppers monitoring the nation, arresting and prosecuting a few “undeserving” mothers – you’d be spending more money and providing less useful service than just rolling out aid for everyone.

    Way too sensible for American politicians, priests and pundits.

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