great article by alicia on high death rates for nyc:

just read the new york city maternal mortality statistics posted by the new york times.  a research team studied 161 women who died of pregnancy-related causes in the city from 2001 to 2005. and while maternal mortality rates have gone down world-wide, in new york city, they have actually gone up- making new york one of the cities in the us with the highest rates of maternal mortality in the usa, after our capital, washington, dc, which falls at the very bottom, as the highest mortality rate in the country. no surprise that dc is also called “chocolate city.” also worth noting, is the fact that the usa falls at 41 in the ranking of worldwide maternal mortality rates. we fare worse than bosnia, the czech republic, spain, germany, south korea, and cuba.

read the whole thing