Wednesday, August 19, 2009

If We're So Great, How Come Our Mothers Die?




I'm doing research for a book and I found something that left me gaping. Literally.

And then I got mad.

I knew that America's education numbers weren't stellar anymore. I knew our maternal mortality rate wasn't as good as we might expect.

But come on - guess how bad it is? What country do you think has a maternal mortality rate equal to the United States?

We must be better than Canada, right? All we've heard lately is how awful their medical program is.

No.

Oh. Maybe the UK, then? The health care debate in the US appears to have put our cousins on defensive, rushing to defend their own system. They must know there's something wrong, right?

No.

Well it's got to be some big industrialized power. What's left? One of the other G8 countries for sure.

Nope. Not by a long shot.

Go search for maternal mortality rates on the Internet. I'm not making this up. These are numbers compiled by UNICEF and distributed by the World Health Organization.

One in 4800 mothers in America dies in childbirth. That doesn't sound so awful, does it?

Compare it to the UK. A mother's odds improve to 1 in 8200 there. Canada? 1 in 11,000. Well at least we've got to be doing better than the Middle East. Kuwait? 1 in 8600. Republic of Korea? 1 in 6100. And in Italy, the maternal death rate is 1 in 26,600.

So what's the country that has a rate equal to ours?

Belarus.

See for yourself. UNICEF State of the World's Children

Go ahead. Tell me again what's wrong with socialized medicine.

1 comment:

pinkpackrat said...

Thanks for pointing out how bad it really is, Susan. I cringe every time I hear people talk about how " we have the best healthcare system in the world" Maybe that was true 50 years ago, but it sure isn't true now.

Give us another 20 years like this and we can be part of the third world too.