THURSDAY, Jan. 12, 2023 (HealthDay News) — From 2020 to 2021, there was no change in overall, early, or late fetal mortality rates, according to a January Vital Statistics Rapid Release report, a publication from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Elizabeth C.W. Gregory, M.P.H., from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, and colleagues describe changes from 2020 to 2021 in total, early, and late fetal mortality using data based on reports of fetal death filed in the 50 states and the District of Columbia (D.C.) collected by the National Vital Statistics System. Only fetal deaths reported at 20 weeks of gestation or more were included in this report.

The researchers found that the overall, early, and late fetal mortality rates did not change significantly from 2020 to 2021, nor did the rates for non-Hispanic White or Hispanic women, while the rate decreased by 5 percent for non-Hispanic Black women. From 2020 to 2021, fetal mortality rates increased in two states, decreased in one state, and did not change notably in 47 states and D.C. From 2019 to 2020, similar results were obtained, with no significant difference observed for overall, early, and late fetal deaths, for the three largest race and Hispanic-origin groups, and for most states.

“Except for the decline for non-Hispanic Black women, fetal mortality rates were unchanged overall and for other groups studied for 2020 to 2021, the second year of the COVID-19 pandemic, following a pattern similar to that seen for 2019 to 2020, the first year of the pandemic,” the authors write.

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