Guest Commentary: Let’s work to end disparities in prenatal care for women of color


On Mother’s Day we pay tribute to the women to whom we owe our lives. While it’s a heartwarming celebration, the chances to enjoy pregnancy, childbirth and motherhood differ vastly, with African-American women at a distinct disadvantage.

Many African-American women will never celebrate Mother’s Day, as they are three to four times more likely to die from pregnancy or childbirth-related causes than white women. Their chances of surviving pregnancy are the same as if they lived in Uzbekistan, according to the World Health Organization.

African-American women are also 49% more likely to deliver prematurely, which can have long-term effects for their babies, including intellectual and developmental disabilities, lung and breathing problems, and neurological disorders.

The cause is not poverty. The…

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