Infographic: Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Pregnancy-Related Deaths — United States, 2007–2016
Data confirms significantly higher pregnancy-related mortality ratios among Black and American Indian/Alaskan Native women. These gaps did not change over time.
About 700 women die each year in the U.S. as a result of pregnancy or its complications.
American Indian/Alaska Native and Black women are 2 to 3 times as likely to die from a pregnancy-related cause than white women.
Disparities Across the Nation
State Pregnancy-Related Mortality Ratios (PRMR) were placed equally into three groups (high, medium, low) and the PRMR was further calculated by race/ethnicity for each group. Even in states with the lowest PRMR, the PRMR for black women was about 3 times as high as the PRMR for white women.
Disparities By Age
Inequities increase by age, with the disparity for black and AI/AN women older than 30 years four to five times that of their white counterparts. For example, the disparity ratio for black women compared to white women ranged from 1.5 among the <20 years age group to 4.3 for the 30–34 years age group.
Disparities By Education Level
The PRMR for black women with at least a college degree was 5 times as high as white women with a similar education.
For More Information
For more information on CDC’s activities to better understand and prevent pregnancy-related deaths, please visit
Page last reviewed: September 4, 2019