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Understanding the TJC requirements for maternal patient safety

The steadily climbing maternal mortality rate in the U.S. has (appropriately) attracted a great deal of media attention over the last few years.

Figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that the rate has more than doubled since 1987, reaching an alarming high of 17.3 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births. That is well above the Healthy People 2020 goal of 11.4.

Worse, the CDC estimates that 60% of maternal deaths reviewed in a study were preventable. Stopping those would result in easily meeting and surpassing the Healthy People 2020 goal.

Many factors have contributed to the rise in maternal mortality, including the increase in complex comorbidities in expecting mothers such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and cardiac disease. There has also been disagreement on the best approach to manage maternal patients, from creating a single oxytocin checklist to detailing more complex processes for managing preeclampsia.

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