Dr. Kathleen Toomey, Commissioner and State Health Officer at Georgia, in an AJC report (Jan 21, 2023):
“We are going to see an increase in maternal mortality during the time of COVID,” Toomey said. “It’s sad but not unexpected.“
Toomey spoke during budget hearings at the state Capitol, saying her agency is pivoting away from an all-hands-on-deck pandemic focus. She said her department would use some of its available bandwidth now to focus on the maternal mortality issue.
For the years 2018-2020, DPH posted pregnancy-related deaths for white women at 22.7 deaths per 100,000 births, and pregnancy-related deaths for Black women at 48.6 deaths per 100,000 births. It did not post overall figures for those years.
In another study (see below) on maternal mortality, it is noted that the mortality rate was 62% higher in states with restrictive abortion policies, likely related to poor availability of health care.
The Commonwealth Fund report (12/4/22): The U.S. Maternal Health Divide: The Limited Maternal Health Services and Worse Outcomes of States Proposing New Abortion Restrictions
My take: Improving maternal mortality should be near the top of the list of priorities and is a good area to try to mitigate health care disparities.
And on a lighter note –Tonight Show Interview with George Santos (Jon Lovitz). Thanks to Steven Liu for sharing this.