The Ectopic Pregnancy Trust calls for crucial action to stop deaths from ectopic pregnancy following the publication of the latest MBRACCE report, “Saving Lives, Improving Mothers’ Care”.
This report looks at maternal deaths in the UK between 2018-2020 and states:
- Women are still dying from early pregnancy problems
- Ectopic pregnancy remains the most frequent cause of maternal death in early pregnancy.
- There remains a more than three-fold difference in maternal mortality rates amongst women from Black ethnic backgrounds and an almost two-fold difference amongst women from Asian ethnic backgrounds compared to white women, emphasising the need for a continued focus on action to address these disparities.
- Vulnerable and young women remain disproportionately represented amongst those who have died from ectopic pregnancy.
- The importance of public and health professional awareness of symptoms of ectopic pregnancy.
It also concludes that almost all the women who died from an ectopic pregnancy could have had better care and that this needs to change. It highlights the importance of improved awareness among healthcare professionals and the public of symptoms of ectopic pregnancy so that more ectopic pregnancies can be identified early and before collapse.
Munira Oza, Director of The Ectopic Pregnancy Trust, said: “It is shocking that women are still dying from ectopic pregnancy. The Government has a commitment to reducing maternal deaths, but these statistics show that compared with the last report, the UK death rate from ectopic pregnancy has increased from five women dying to eight. This is devastating and unacceptable.
From the report, awareness among healthcare professionals and the public and improvements in care are key. We at The EPT echo the messages on ensuring all women are educated on the symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy, know where to seek advice, and have access to early pregnancy units. While we agree that awareness needs to be improved and that lessons must be learned to improve care, we stress the need to ensure that medical training and resources are secured to facilitate this. Deaths due to ectopic pregnancy are avoidable and no woman should lose their life to the condition in this day and age.”