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Is hospital negligence contributing to maternal deaths?

Most likely, it would not surprise many people to know that the risks of pregnancy and childbirth do not only apply to the baby, but to the mothers as well. What may surprise New Jersey readers is that an increasing number of women are dying here in the United States due to complications. Doctor and hospital negligence may be contributing to those rising numbers.

Sources point to issues such as obesity-related problems, age of the mother and an increase in cesarean section births to account for the rise in maternal deaths, along with lack of quality and affordable health care for mothers. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reported that in 1987, 7.2 mothers died per every 100,000 lives births. By 2011, that number had risen dramatically to 17.8. Improvements in record-keeping processes can only account for a portion of this alarming increase.

For example, doctors are just now attempting to standardize the care of women who suffer from obesity-related issues, such as high blood pressure and diabetes, during pregnancy. These same health conditions, and others, may also be present in mothers over the age of 35. As a general rule, these women are not being given special treatment during pregnancy even though these conditions can easily complicate the process.

Doctor and hospital negligence in the treatment of pregnant women who are not consistently treated as high-risk can easily be contributing to the increase in maternal mortality rates. The failure of the obstetrics community to recognize that more mothers in this country are older and obese could mean that a woman is not receiving the appropriate standard of care. Anyone in New Jersey who has lost a loved one due to pregnancy or childbirth complications may benefit from having the circumstances reviewed by someone knowledgeable in the area of medical malpractice claims since the filing of a claim may be appropriate.

Source: CNN, "Why is the maternal mortality rate going up in the United States?", Kelly Wallace, Dec. 2, 2015

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Alan D. Bell
650 Bloomfield Avenue, Suite 105
Bloomfield, NJ 07003

Phone: 973-233-4291
Phone: 973-743-7070

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