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Precipitous Rise in Maternal Death Rates, Healthcare Implications of Affirmative Action Ruling & More

July 07, 2023 (1 min read)

U.S. Maternal Death Rates More Than Doubled in Recent Decades

The maternal death rate in the United States more than doubled between 1999 and 2019—from 12.7 per 100,000 births to 32.2 per 100,000 births—according to a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Black mothers died at the highest rates during that period, 26.7 per 100,000 in 1999 and 55.4 per 100,000 in 2019, with the highest rates coming in some northeastern states. The largest increases in maternal death rates over the period were among American Indian and Alaska Native women, rising from 14.0 per 100,000 in 1999 to 49.2 per 100,000 in 2019.

Maternal mortality rates were high across all races and ethnicities, but especially among Black women, in southern states. The highest rates for American Indian and Alaska Native women were in the Midwest and Great Plans. (REUTERS)

Medical Schools Worried SCOTUS Affirmative Action Ruling Could Hurt Patient Care

Medical educators expressed concern that the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling last month declaring the use of race as a factor in student admissions at colleges and universities unconstitutional will negatively impact patient care by decreasing diversity among providers.

“Diversity in health care providers contributes to increased student, trainee, and physician confidence in working with patient populations who are different from their own identities,” said Norma Poll-Hunter, senior director of workforce diversity at the Association of American Medical Colleges, which represents over 500 medical schools and teaching hospitals. (KFF HEALTH NEWS)

FL Restricts Mask Use in Healthcare Settings

Under a pair of emergency rules (59ER23-01 and 59ER23-2) issued by the administration of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), doctor’s offices and hospitals will no longer be able to require visitors or employees to wear face masks. The rules also allow healthcare providers to require patients to wear masks in common areas only if they are exhibiting symptoms of or have been diagnosed with an infectious disease that can be spread via airborne transmission. (FLORIDA POLITICS)

—Compiled by SNCJ Managing Editor KOREY CLARK

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