Maternal Mortality and Morbidity in Texas

Background  

Over the last year, policymakers, researchers, and the public have focused considerable attention to the number of Texas maternal deaths and severe health outcomes resulting from pregnancy and delivery. The Department of State Health Services (DSHS) is committed to improving maternal health, and preventing maternal mortality and morbidity in Texas.  

At DSHS, the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) section within the Division for Community Health Improvement uses its established public health leadership, expertise, experience, and infrastructure to improve the health and well-being of mothers and children. Public health prevention prolongs and saves lives.  Examples of public health prevention are hypertension that never developed, an obstetric hemorrhage that did not happen, and the maternal death that never occurred.  

Public Health Prevention  

There are a number of key public health activities underway to study and improve maternal health in Texas, supported by DSHS MCH. All of these efforts are geared toward preventing maternal mortality and morbidity. One activity is the Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Task Force.  

The Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Task Force began its work in late 2014 with administrative and epidemiologic support from DSHS. The multidisciplinary Task Force studies and reviews maternal death cases and statewide data trends, and makes recommendations impacting maternal mortality in Texas. More information and the latest Task Force reports can be found on the Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Task Force webpage.  

Further activities related to maternal health can be found on the Additional Maternal Health Efforts webpage.  

More background information and statistics on maternal mortality and morbidity in Texas can be found on the DSHS Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Publications and Presentations webpage.

Texas’ Maternal Mortality Rate  

The rate of maternal death in Texas differs depending on the way it is calculated. Information on how DSHS calculates the rate of maternal death in Texas can be found on the Rates of Maternal Death in Texas webpage.

 

For more information or additional questions, please email maternalhealth@dshs.texas.gov

 

Last updated December 6, 2017