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Maternal mortality numbers on the rise worldwide, new WHO report says

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Posted at 10:46 PM, Feb 23, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-23 23:21:10-05

There's concern among world health leaders after a new report from the World Health Organization shows that maternal mortality rates in most countries have either risen or remained the same.

In the United States, WHO reports maternal mortality rates have increased by 75% over the last 20 years.

Additionally, the report says the U.S. has experienced 21 maternal deaths for every 100,000 live births in 2020.

20 years ago, that number was just 12 out of every 100,000 live births in the United States.

Jazmine Long, is president and CEO of Birthing Beautiful Communities, which is a non-profit that works to reduce the maternal mortality rate in Northeast Ohio by providing support to women during and after pregnancies by using a doula.

Long told News 5 there needs to be a "comprehensive support system" in place to reduce these statistics.

"We know that doctors are not listening. Not trusting. No believing what we're saying, leads to these kinds of poor and horrific outcomes," she said. "We know that women who are in rural areas and women who have lack of access to care are having this outcome."

The U.S. is one eight countries flagged in the report as having some of the worst rates across the globe. Other countries include Greece, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.

Globally, 287,000 women died in 2020 from maternal issues, which breaks down to a death every two minutes.

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