Racial and ethnic trends in maternal mortality in the United States, the Northeast, and in Maine

A new article in the Journal of the American Medical Association offers a comprehensive look at maternal mortality across racial-ethnic groups for each state over time.
Researchers used data from the National Vital Statistics System and the U.S. Census Bureau to construct a time series of maternal mortality rates (MMRs, or maternal deaths
per 100,000 live births) for mutually exclusive racial and ethnic groups by state from 1999 to 2019. Using median maternal mortality rates across states, the authors find the
highest mortality rates among the Black population in every year of the study, a rate that more than doubled over the study period. In the Northeast and in Maine specifically,
mortality increased for all groups over time, with the highest maternal mortality rates among the Black population. The granularity of this state-level data shows that inequities in maternal mortality are not an abstract national issue but rather one that plays out in local communities, including in Maine and across the Northeast