Michael H. Bereston, Inc.

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Phone: 410-793-4554

Toll Free: 866-517-4037

Black and rural babies most at risk for death

The birth of a child should be an exciting time, but for too many families in Maryland, it becomes a stressful emergency. New studies show this is especially true for families who live in rural areas.

According to NM Political Report, maternal care in rural areas is becoming a thing of the past. A study from researchers at the University of Minnesota found that the number of rural hospitals offering obstetric services decreased significantly over a ten-year period, from 45 percent of rural counties having no services in 2004 up to 54 percent in 2014. This is a problematic issue, especially because women in rural counties are more likely to have chronic conditions that make pregnancy more difficult. There were higher rates of both maternal and infant deaths and higher rates of hemorrhaging related to birth than in urban areas. Rural areas often have a higher population of poor people as well, which means these hospitals are disproportionally affected by changes and cuts to Medicaid, so mothers bear much of this burden. In fact, hospitals that had the strictest Medicaid standards were more likely to see a decrease in obstetric services compared to other hospitals.

The other factor most likely to be present in a hospital cutting obstetric care was a large black population. As the Weekly Challenger reports, black babies are three times more likely to die if they are born in a rural area. Both Hispanic and white babies have a greater chance of survival when born in rural areas, although the infant mortality rate for all babies in rural counties was 20 percent higher than for infants born in urban areas. These rates are from birth to the first year of a baby's life, and for rural babies, they are 49 percent more likely to die between days 28 and 364 than an urban baby.

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Office Location

Michael H. Bereston, Inc.
138 Main Street, Suite 200
P.O. Box 2990
Annapolis, MD 21401

Maryland: 410-793-4554
Toll Free: 866-517-4037
Baltimore/Annapolis: 410-269-5011
DC: 202-628-2226
Fax: 410-269-5022

Annapolis Medical Malpractice Office

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