Maternal and infant mortality/morbidity rates are an important indicator of healthcare access and quality in any given population. Unfortunately, this is not always the case—especially for vulnerable populations such as minority groups where disparities in care often exist. In the US for example, African-American women are three to four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes compared to their white counterparts—a concerning figure that highlights continued need for improved healthcare access.
In addition, infant mortality is also on the rise especially among those living in poverty or rural areas due to lack of resources available. Similarly, morbidity rates are also higher with certain conditions becoming increasingly common due to factors like poor nutrition or environmental exposure (e.g., lead poisoning). These figures demonstrate the need for greater investment both into preventative measures as well as improving existing infrastructure so that all individuals have equal chances at a healthy life regardless of race or socioeconomic status.