Maternal Mortality in America - Hospitals Know What To Do, They Just Aren't Doing It

From our Patient Safety Resource Center

What expectant mothers need to know to properly advocate for themselves during pregnancy


Pregnant women visiting with her Ob-Gyn

Even before our healthcare system faced the extreme stress of a global pandemic, hospitals have stumbled in meeting one of healthcare's most basic callings — providing for a safe childbirth. An unfortunate statistic owned by hospitals in the United States is having the highest rate of women dying during childbirth in the developed world.

"What's most disturbing about the increased trend in maternal deaths and injuries is that the medical profession knows how to prevent most of these harms," says Boston birth injury lawyer Krysia Syska. "Hospitals aren't following recommended guidelines to identify high-risk pregnancies, and monitor and respond to a mother's well-being before, during and after delivery."

Attorney Syska along with her partner Attorney Robert Higgins settled a maternal mortality malpractice case last year for $12 million on behalf of a family of a 34-year-old woman who died shortly after childbirth. It was found that the hospital had violated its own procedures and policies, was not credentialed to care for high-risk patients, and should have transferred the high-risk patient immediately upon arrival. The case settled quickly before a lawsuit was filed.

Lubin & Meyer has published an information page on Maternal Mortality in its Patient Safety Resource Center to help inform mothers-to-be. The article highlights recent investigative reporting and research into women dying related to childbirth. Additionally, it provide links to tips and best practices to help pregnant women understand the risks and communicate effectively with their obstetrician and healthcare team in order to best advocate for themselves and their baby during childbirth. It also includes a link to the New York Times educational resource: A Guide for Black Mothers: Protecting Your Birth - How racism can impact your pre- and postnatal care — and advice for speaking to your Ob-Gyn about it.

Go to the maternal health article here:

> Lifesaving Tips for Safer Childbirth

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