A cluster analysis of the negative birthing experiences of Black people in the United States from 2000-2020 Open Access

Murray, Sarah (Summer 2022)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/gh93h084g?locale=en


INTRODUCTION: Maternal mortality is the death of a woman during pregnancy, at delivery, or soon after delivery (CDC, 2022). According to the AJMC, approximately two-thirds of maternal deaths are preventable (Melillo, 2020). Among eleven developed nations, a 2020 report found that the United States ranked last in terms of maternal mortality, maternal care, supply of maternity providers, and access to home visits or paid parental leave (Melillo, 2020).

PURPOSE: To characterize common features of a cluster of Black birthing experiences in the US between the years 2000 and 2020, and to develop hypotheses for the documented trends of high and rising Black maternal morbidity and mortality in the United States

METHODS: Twelve birthing experiences of pregnant Black people were found through broad internet searches. Each story was described and analyzed for common themes. Four main outcomes of interest were compared to eight exposures found throughout the birthing stories, and a similarity score was calculated and presented in a matrix. Recommendations for future research and intervention were proposed. 

LIMITATIONS: The data is limited due to bias of reporting and is not a direct account of the events. 

RESULTS: The exposures with the highest similarity score to maternal mortality were lack of agency, c-section birth, and poor care. 

CONCLUSIONS: More attention needs to be given to the issue of maternal mortality within the US, especially among the Black community. Research must be done on what is causing the exposures to be linked to mortality and interventions must be implemented to reduce the rate. 

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION                                                                                                                  1

PURPOSE                                                                                                                               7

METHODS                                                                                                                             7

LIMITATIONS                                                                                                                       8

BIRTHING STORIES                                                                                                            9

ANALYSIS OF BIRTHING STORIES                                                                                 15

SIMILARITY MATRIX                                                                                                        17

FUTURE RECOMMENDATIONS                                                                                       18

FIGURES AND TABLES                                                                                                      20

REFERENCES                                                                                                                       28

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