Photo credits: Mario Testino | Vogue
When professional tennis player and model Serena Williams recently revealed the details about a health scare she experienced while giving birth last year, she raised alarm about the high number of black women who die giving birth in America.
Previously at HealthyBlackWoman.com, an article was published about a CNN report, which covered a documentary film series titled Giving Birth in America. The information offered in this cinematic offering about the maternal death rate among women in America showed a grim disproportion when it came to black women.
This is not a myth and the factual data, which was recently extracted and confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control proves that black women are much more likely to die while giving birth in America than the women in every other ethnicity, especially white women. What are the real reasons behind this troubling reality?
For the February 2018 issue of Vogue Magazine, Williams has a front cover feature on a copy of each issue, as well as the main interview that is published inside. In her exclusive Vogue interview, the new wife and mother gave some disturbing details about the experience she went through at a hospital while giving birth.
Vogue’s spread about what Williams shared partially reads as follows:
“[Williams] walked out of the hospital room so her mother wouldn’t worry and told the nearest nurse, between gasps, that she needed a CT scan with contrast and IV heparin (a blood thinner) right away. The nurse thought her pain medicine might be making her confused. But Serena insisted, and soon enough a doctor was performing an ultrasound of her legs. ‘I was like, a Doppler? I told you, I need a CT scan and a heparin drip,’ she remembers telling the team. The ultrasound revealed nothing, so they sent her for the CT, and sure enough, several small blood clots had settled in her lungs. Minutes later she was on the drip.”
Black women get treated in a second-class manner by the biased medical system and that is a precursor to the high number of them dying during childbirth. No matter how rich or poor they are, they will never get the care they deserve if their lives are not prioritized equally alongside other women.