Evidence Review: Maternal Mental Conditions Drive Climbing Death Rate in Us


credit: Wired

"The contribution of mental health conditions to the maternal morbidity and mortality crisis that we have in America is not widely recognized," Dr. Katherine L.

Wisner says in a press release.

Wisner is the associate chief of Perinatal Mental Health at Children's National Hospital in Washington, DC, and the lead author of a study published Monday in JAMA Psychiatry that calls for "urgent action to address the mental health crisis that is contributing to the demise of mothers in America."

According to the study, more than 80% of maternal deaths in the US are preventable, including more than twice as many women who die from postpartum hemorrhage as women who die from overdoses.

But nearly one in four maternal fatalities are caused by mental health disorders, including depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder.

"We need to bring this to the attention of the public and policymakers to demand action to address the mental health crisis that is contributing to the demise of mothers in America," Wisner says.

In the study, researchers looked at 30 peer-reviewed studies and 15 historical references and found that maternal mental health is under-appreciated and under-reported.

For example, more than 400 maternity care centers closed between 2006 and 2020, leaving nearly 6 million women with limited or no access to maternity care.

And while

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