THURSDAY, Feb. 24, 2022 (HealthDay News) — In 2020, 861 women were identified as having died of maternal causes in the United States, marking an increase from 754 women in 2019, according to a report published in the February Health E-Stats, a publication of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Health Statistics.

Donna L. Hoyert, Ph.D., from the Division of Vital Statistics at the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, presents maternal mortality rates for 2020 based on National Vital Statistics System data.

Hoyert identified 861 women as having died of maternal causes in the United States in 2020 compared with 754 in 2019. The maternal mortality rate was 23.8 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2020 compared with 20.1 in 2019. In 2020, the maternal mortality rate was 55.3 deaths per 100,000 live-births in non-Hispanic Black women compared with 19.1 for non-Hispanic White women; rates for non-Hispanic Black women were significantly higher than those for non-Hispanic White and Hispanic women. There was an increase in maternal mortality rates seen with maternal age. In 2020, the rates were 13.8 deaths per 100,000 live births for women aged younger than 25 years compared with 22.8 and 107.9 for those aged 25 to 39 years and those aged 40 years and older, respectively.

“Maternal mortality rates fluctuate from year to year because of the relatively small number of these events, and possibly also due to issues associated with the reporting of maternal deaths on death certificates,” Hoyert writes.

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