June 19, 2017

Dr. Marie Thoma from the SPH Department of Family Science weighs in on statistics cited in an interview with the outgoing leader of the National Organization for Women. "Terry O’Neill has a warning at the end of her eight-year tenure heading the National Organization for Women: there is a connection between increasing maternal mortality in the United States and GOP policies under consideration in the U.S. Congress," the article reads. The story points to statistics showing that the United States has the worst maternal rate in the developed world, with maternal death rates increasing over 26% since 2000. The article says that California's rates have declined as their Medicaid coverage increased, while Texas' rate sharply increased in 2011, the same year that 82 family planning clinics closed because of a 66% decrease in state family planning funds. Dr. Thoma says that "coding anomalies" may have had an effect on the Texas statistics. However, the article says, "Her soon-to-be published research finds 'we still see an overall increase' in Texas while there's little dispute that California's rates are on the decline, she said."

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Marie Thoma