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News Roundup | Week of May 18, 2018

By Megan Bedford on 5/18/18 5:07 PM

In this week's News Roundup:
  • Near-Miss Mothers: For Every Woman Who Dies Post-Childbirth, Thousands More Come Close
  • Surging Opioid Overdose Rate in Latinos Tied to Language Barriers
  • More Transgender-Inclusive Healthcare is Essential

Near-Miss Mothers: For Every Woman Who Dies Post-Childbirth, Thousands More Come Close

The maternal mortality rates in the U.S. are grim, but the number of women who suffer postpartum complications that nearly cause death are even worse. For every woman who dies after childbirth, at least 70 come close. Some estimates put the number of women who suffer "severe maternal morbidity" at around 80,000 per year. A report by NPR/ProPublica finds that many of these complications are preventable, and there's a common theme that postpartum mothers don't feel their concerns are taken seriously by healthcare providers.

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News Roundup | Week of February 23, 2018

By Megan Bedford on 2/23/18 1:16 PM


Physicians Feel Unequipped to Treat Transgender Patients

The transgender population is underserved by the healthcare system, and one reason may be provider hesitancy. To meet the medical needs of transgender people, healthcare organizations, together with medical schools and residency programs, must incorporate training and content on how to care for transgender patients.

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News Roundup | Week of February 9, 2016

By Megan Bedford on 2/9/18 9:48 AM

Racial Bias Affects Trauma Outcomes

Dr. Adil Haider, a trauma surgeon at Harvard Medical School, has been studying disparities in emergency care outcomes for over 10 years. “People have always had this iconic image of emergency departments as the great equalizers,” Haider says. “There’s a perception that no matter who you are, if you have a trauma injury, you’re going to get picked up and receive the same level of care.” However, Dr. Haider's research identified large gaps in patient survival rates based on race. Compared to white patients with similar injuries, he found that black and Hispanic patients have a 20% and 50% greater chance of death, respectively. Socioeconomic factors, insurance status, and access to immediate emergency care all contribute to this disparity. But unconscious bias is also a likely culprit.

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News Roundup | Week of January 15, 2018

By Megan Bedford on 1/19/18 6:42 PM

Serena Williams's Birth Story Highlights Black Maternal Mortality Rates

Serena Williams's birth experience has added to the growing chorus of concern and outrage over black maternal mortality rates. In a cover story for Vogue, the tennis star describes her life-threatening post-birth complications. When she started to feel short of breath after her delivery, her concerns (based on a history of pulmonary embolisms) were initially dismissed by her caregivers.

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News Roundup | Week of December 18, 2017

By Megan Bedford on 12/22/17 11:56 AM

Racism May Cause the Loss of Black Infants

In the U.S., black babies die at twice the rate of white babies. According to Arthur James, an OB-GYN at Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State University in Columbus, the majority of black infants that die are born premature, because black mothers have a higher risk of early labor. Research has shown that this gap can't be explained by poverty, education, or genetics. Around the world, women of similar economic and genetic histories routinely give birth to healthy, full-term babies. But there's something about growing up black in America that leads African-American mothers to have babies that are comparatively smaller and less healthy.

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