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The Liz Bruenig Express Arrives in Atlanta

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I am beginning to think that Bruenig’s belief that after overturning Roe, the “pro-life” movement would turn to supporting families might not happen.

New moms in Georgia were increasingly likely to die from pregnancy over the last two decades, so much so that their rate of death from pregnancy rose more steeply than almost all other states in the U.S., according to new data from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington and Harvard University’s Mass General Brigham.

The new study adds to a growing mountain of data on the issue, showing most of the deaths are preventable: Patients complain of symptoms but aren’t believed. Patients have dangerous symptoms but don’t know it. Care is sparse. New moms get isolated at home and fall through the cracks.

The study, published Monday in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), looked at increases in maternal mortality between 1999 and 2019. Georgia ranked in the top five worst states for Asian and Pacific Islander moms; for Hispanic moms; for Black moms and for white moms. White moms had the highest rate of maternal deaths increase among those groups, rising more than 135% in Georgia and each of the five top states. Even with the increase Black women were more likely to die from pregnancy. In 1999, Black women in Georgia were four times more likely to die from pregnancy than white women. In 2019, Black women were almost two times more likely to die from pregnancy than white women.

The new study is the first such analysis for every state, showing long-term trends in maternal mortality and differences in each by racial and ethnic groups. It used deeper statistical methods to flesh out data from underreported states and show that different racial groups often have different factors at play.

The data used in the study stopped prior to the pandemic in 2019. National data show maternal mortality increased in 2020 and 2021 when it was harder to access health care. The pandemic also hindered some prevention efforts to decrease the deaths of Black women. Dr. Allison Bryant, senior medical director for health equity at Mass General Brigham and co-first author, said the pandemic may have widened the disparities seen in this study.

I am sure Georgia Republicans will be right on this, shortly after affirming voting rights for Black people and ending Black poverty.

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