The Black Maternity Scandal

Richelle Humes — Emotional Well-being, Mental Health, Psychiatrists, Psychologists

Channel 4 Dispatches investigates most recent figures which show that black girls are just more than 4 occasions more most likely to die through pregnancy and childbirth and up to six weeks postpartum

On Channel 4 Dispatches: The Black Maternity Scandal, presenter and mum of two Rochelle Humes investigates the shocking enhance in the likelihood of death through pregnancy and immediately after the birth of their youngster, for Black girls.

“Learning that Black women are four times more likely to die during pregnancy and up to six weeks after birth was shocking and I felt compelled to share this to a wider audience, Rochelle says. “While we’re incredibly lucky to have the NHS, and the UK remains a relatively safe place to give birth, it is essential that we better understand why these disparities in maternal deaths exist and ask what we can do to reduce risk for all mothers.”

The most recent published maternal mortality figures also show that mixed ethnicity girls are 3 occasions more most likely to endure maternal death through pregnancy and Asian girls are practically twice as most likely.

Although this disparity has steadily been widening more than the decade, there is no definitive explanation for why mortality prices differ. NHS acknowledge and regret this disparity but there are presently no particular targets set to cut down the disproportionate prices.

Accounting for extreme maternal morbidity

Maternal death prices do not give a complete image, having said that, mainly because study shows that for every single one particular lady of any race who dies, about one hundred will endure a “severe maternal morbidity” – frequently referred to as a ‘near miss’. Although information is not presently collected in a constant way, one particular study from 2014 shows that compared with white European girls, Black African girls are 83% more most likely and Black Caribbean girls 80% more most likely to endure a close to death expertise through pregnancy and in the weeks immediately after childbirth.

“There is a lack of support for brown, Black and marginalised communities”

Natalie Cook died immediately after the birth of her secong youngster, at just 35 years old, immediately after an amniotic fluid embolism (identified as AFE) which, globally, is one particular of the major causes of direct maternal death. Her sister Naomi, shares on Dispatches that though her household received counselling organised by the hospital, other elements of their aftercare have been poorly handled and insensitive. “There is a lack of support for brown, Black and marginalised communities. The system isn’t built for that support,” Naomi says.

Minister for Maternity Nadine Dorries is now working to address this and assure that all brown, Black and marginalised communities are no longer at a considerably elevated danger: “The colour of a woman’s skin must have no influence on her or her baby’s wellness. I am certainly committed to tackling disparities and producing confident all girls get the appropriate assistance and greatest probable maternity care. I have launched an oversight group to monitor how the wellness service is tackling maternal inequalities.

Dispatches: The Black Maternity Scandal
First broadcast Monday 29th March, 8pm

Originally published in