Black Maternal Health Awareness Week draws attention to disparities in care

The state Health Department says Black women are four times more likely to die during childbirth than a white mother.

News 12 Staff

Apr 16, 2021, 8:02 PM

Updated 1,091 days ago

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This week is Black Maternal Health Awareness Week, which focuses on why Black women are more likely to die during childbirth.
The state Health Department says Black women are four times more likely to die during childbirth than a white mother.
Doctors say there are ways to reduce deaths and disparities for women of color as Long Island maternal death rates exceed the national average. In addition, Black women in New York are three times more likely to die.
"Part of it is systemic racism. The other parts are that Black women are inherently at a higher risk with whether it be due to environmental factors, genetics or both. We're not really sure, but we believe that plays a part," says Dr. Sandy Dorcelus, an OBGYN at NYU Langone Hospital Long Island.
The goal of this week is for Black women to know there are health options for before, during and after childbirth.


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