Maternal mortality by World Health Organization

Key facts :

  • Every day, approximately 1000 women die from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth.
  • 99% of all maternal deaths occur in developing countries.
  • Maternal mortality is higher in rural areas and among poorer and less educated communities.
  • Adolescents face a higher risk of complications and death as a result of pregnancy than older women.
  • Skilled care before, during and after childbirth can save the lives of women and newborn babies.
  • Between 1990 and 2008, maternal mortality worldwide dropped by one third.

Maternal mortality is unacceptably high. About 1000 women die from pregnancy- or childbirth-related complications around the world every day. In 2008, 358 000 women died during and following pregnancy and childbirth. Almost all of these deaths occurred in developing countries, and most could have been prevented.

Progress towards achieving the fifth Millennium Development Goal

Improving maternal health is one of the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) adopted by the international community in 2000. Under MDG5, countries committed to reducing maternal mortality by three quarters between 1990 and 2015. Since 1990, maternal deaths worldwide have dropped by 34%.

In sub-Saharan Africa, a number of countries have halved their levels of maternal mortality since 1990. In other regions, including Asia and North Africa, even greater headway has been made. However, between 1990 and 2008, the global maternal mortality ratio (i.e. the number of maternal deaths per 100 000 live births) declined by only 2.3% per year. This is far from the annual decline of 5.5% required to achieve MDG5. Baca lebih lanjut

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