(CBS) — A woman having a baby in the United States is now more likely to die than a woman giving birth in Lithuania.
A startling new report shows it’s safer to have a baby in dozens of other countries, including places not necessarily known for cutting edge medicine, like Slovenia, Belarus, and Estonia.
CBS 2’s Marissa Bailey takes a look at why.
“I view pregnancy as a health scare, for myself personally,” said mother Maura Giguere Deptula.
Her son Rockwell was almost two weeks old when she developed post-partum preeclampsia.
“I was sitting at dinner and I started to notice flashing in my vision,” she said.
Deptula says if it wasn’t for excellent pregnancy health care, the outcome might have been much different.
“It’s just a blessing that we made it through,” she said.
But apparently some moms aren’t as lucky.
A new international study from the Save The Children organization says a woman in the U.S. has a 1 in 1,800 chance of dying as a result of a pregnancy.
The study shows the U.S. ranks last among developed countries.
Doctor Jessica Shepherd says it’s directly related to socio-economic status.
“I think the problem encompasses much more than just education, but also the access to health care and also the health care that they’re getting,” said Dr. Shepherd. “Is it premium health care? Is it consistent?”
Doctor Shepherd says she hopes this study pushes lawmakers to give more money to maternal healthcare programs to get mother’s the care they need.
“We really need to increase the awareness to women and children, maternal health and providing those resources,” she said.
If you’re reading this and may be nervous about your pregnancy or the pregnancy of someone you know — Doctor Shepherd says to ask any and all questions during appointments.
She also encourages women to go to places of support, churches, hospital satellite offices and even libraries to get information on maternal services available in your area.