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November 25, 1950

MATERNAL DEATHS—ONE IN A THOUSAND

JAMA. 1950;144(13):1096-1097. doi:10.1001/jama.1950.02920130048016

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Abstract

The Journal takes pride in announcing that for the first time in history the maternal mortality ratefor a large nation—the United States of America—has been pushed slightly below the apparently irreducible minimum of 1 maternal death per 1,000 live births. When the 1949 rates for Sweden, Norway, Denmark, the Netherlands and New Zealand become available, one or more of these small countries with homogeneous populations may join the United States in the select group of countries with meternal mortality rates of 1.0 or less. The 1933 rates for the United States, Sweden and (the whites of) New Zealand were 6.2, 3.1 and 4.4. Reductions in maternal mortality in the United States are, however, remarkable because they have been made in a population which contains, as a result of immigration, many diverse groups from the health standpoint. According to compilations of the number of maternal deaths and live births in the

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