The death of a woman during pregnancy, childbirth, or the year
postpartum is a rare and tragic event. Maternal health experts are actively
searching for answers about why the ratio of pregnancy-related deaths in the
United States is higher than other developed nations, why it is increasing, and
why the disparity by race/ethnicity is widening.
Maternal Mortality in Oregon
In Oregon, over the past 10 years, the number of maternal deaths per year has ranged from 4 to 12. However, the current method of case finding may undercount actual deaths by as much as one-third. It is also important to note that for every woman who dies, there are approximately 50 who suffer severe maternal morbidity--very severe complications of pregnancy, labor, and delivery that bring them close to death. Oregon’s maternal death rate, measured as the number of maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, varies from year to year due to the overall small number of deaths but is typically at or below that of the U.S. overall.
HB 4133: Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Review Committee
In the 2018 legislative session, Oregon passed House Bill 4133 which gave direction to the Oregon Health Authority to form the Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Review Committee. Read the full bill text.