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Texas team re-calculates maternal mortality rate

MacDorman findings from 2016 addressed, somewhat

In an article in Obstetrics and Gynecology in Spring 2018 a group of researchers from Texas reported on a re-calculation of the state's maternal mortality rate using a method of cross-referencing birth certificates, death certificates, hospital discharge data, and medical records. The group found that the actual mortality rate in 2012 was 56, not 147 as found by Faculty Associate Marian MacDorman and colleagues in 2016.

Writing for the Texas Tribune, Marissa Evans reported that Dr. MacDorman, "wrote that the Texas maternal mortality task force's work is 'laudable, necessary, and entirely appropriate given the current state of Texas vital statistics.'

"But she raised concerns about the new study's scope.

" 'As the study examined data from only a single year (2012), questions concerning the maternal mortality increase in Texas in the critical period from 2010 to 2012 remain unanswered, as do questions about more recent trends. In the absence of reliable vital statistics data, answers to those questions depend on detailed case review — an expensive and time-consuming process for committees,' " Evans reported.

See the article in the Texas Tribune

This story was also reported in :

Washington Post

Houston Chronicle

Ars Techica

Texas Observer