Photo credits: Getty Images
Very recently, CNN News profiled a riveting documentary series titled Giving Birth in America. The different segments of this film project covered the obstacles women face with maternal health in various states across the U.S.
A nonprofit organization called Every Mother Counts produced the documentary series, which featured commentary from medical professionals and women who escaped death while giving birth. In CNN’s recent report, a woman named Timoria McQueen Saba was interviewed exclusively about her near death experience in 2010.
At that time, Saba, 39, was due to give birth to her oldest daughter Gigi. On one April afternoon in 2010, Saba experienced a postpartum hemorrhage while she was vaginally giving birth to her daughter. The bleeding was severe and the whole ordeal nearly took Saba’s life.
The former celebrity makeup artist has become a full-fledged advocate of women and maternal health. Surviving such a tragic situation has motivated Saba to raise awareness about this serious problem, which disproportionately affects black mothers.
“It really took me a while to digest it. What was different about me? Why didn’t I die? What were the reasons for that? I felt like I have a duty to tell this story, to represent my race in a way that not many people can, because I lived through it,” Saba said, according to CNN.
“The racial divide in maternal deaths between black mothers and mothers of other ethnicities in the U.S. is not a new phenomenon. Dr. Michael Lindsay, associate professor at the Emory University School of Medicine and chief of service for gynecology and obstetrics at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta also spoke with CNN about this issue.
The racial divide in maternal deaths has been persistent for decades, so the rate is not something new. It’s something we’ve known for a number of years,” Dr. Lindsay said, according to CNN’s report.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported earlier this month that black women are three to four times more likely to experience maternal death than women of other races. Some medical experts blame the high rate of black female maternal deaths on adverse risk factors, such as increased hypertension, obesity, and other health ailments.