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New study reveals No. 1 cause of pregnancy-related deaths

'The majority were preventable'


By Laurel Duggan
Daily Caller News Foundation

Mental health issues were the leading cause of pregnancy-related deaths from 2017 to 2019, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study released Tuesday.

Of all pregnancy-related deaths, 22.7% were related to suicide, overdose, substance abuse or other mental health factors, according to the CDC. Mental health issues represented nearly double the second-leading cause, hemorrhage (13.7%), which was followed by cardiac and coronary conditions (12.8%) and infections (9.2%).

The report paints a much clearer picture of pregnancy-related deaths in this country,” Wanda Barfield, M.D., director of CDC’s Division of Reproductive Health said in a press relese. “The majority of pregnancy-related deaths were preventable, highlighting the need for quality improvement initiatives in states, hospitals, and communities that ensure all people who are pregnant or postpartum get the right care at the right time.”

White women had the highest percentage of mental health-related deaths at 34.8%, followed by Hispanic (24.1%), black (7%) and Asian (3.1%) women, the study found.