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How Race Factors into PPH

Postpartum hemorrhage (PPH) is a serious complication that occurs after childbirth, and it can be life-threatening. Although PPH is a global issue, studies show that there are disparities in PPH deaths between women of different races in America.

According to a report by the CDC, the maternal mortality rate for non-Hispanic Black women was 3.2 times higher than that for non-Hispanic White women in 2019. Furthermore, Black women are more likely to experience severe maternal morbidity, which is a near-fatal condition that affects a woman during or after childbirth.

One of the reasons for these disparities is the quality of healthcare that Black women receive during pregnancy and childbirth. Studies show that Black women are more likely to receive inadequate care, including delayed care, and to experience mistreatment from healthcare providers. Black women also have a higher prevalence of chronic health conditions, which can increase the risk of PPH.

Another factor that contributes to the disparity in PPH deaths is implicit bias. Implicit bias refers to unconscious attitudes or beliefs that influence our behavior towards certain groups of people. Studies show that implicit bias can affect the quality of care that Black women receive from healthcare providers. Providers may not be aware of their implicit biases, but they can lead to misdiagnosis, delayed treatment, or inadequate care.

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