Maternity Care Deserts are Growing in the U.S.

Maternity Care Deserts Map
Click on the image to access the report

The March of Dimes report, Nowhere to Go: Maternity Care Deserts Across the U.S., identifies counties in which access to maternity health care services is limited or absent, either through lack of services or barriers to a woman’s ability to access that care. The report found that 7 million women of childbearing age live in counties with limited or no access to maternity care. Women who live in these areas give birth to 1 in 8 babies (500,000 babies) every year.

More than a third of counties (1,095 counties) across the U.S. are identified as maternity care deserts – counties with no hospital that is staffed appropriately to provide care for pregnant women and no obstetrician/gynecologist or certified nurse midwives to care for them.


  • Areas where there is low or no access affect up to 6.9 million women and almost 500,000 births across the U.S.

  • This includes a five percent increase in counties that have less maternity access since 2020.

  • In maternity care deserts alone, approximately 2.2 million women of childbearing age and almost 150,000 babies are affected.

  • There’s a two percent increase in counties that are maternity care deserts since our 2020 report. That’s 1,119 counties and an additional 15,933 women with no maternity care.

  • Florida had the most women impacted by improvements to maternity care access (more than 92,000).

  • Ohio had the most women impacted by overall reductions in access to care (over 97,000).

Click here to download the March of Dimes report

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