Maternal mortality

Published: Monday 15 March 1999

OFFICIALS from the World Bank (wb) and the World Health Organisation (who) have reported that there has been little progress in the area of maternal mortality, mostly from easily preventable diseases. In developing countries, one in every 48 women dies from pregnancy-related omplications each year, compared to one in 4,000 in the us and northern Europe. No other indicator reflects so starkly the disparities between the rich and poor, between the "haves" and the "have ots",between the developed and the developing world, said who director-general G H Burndtland.

According to Anne Tinker, senior health specialist at the wb, complications of pregnancy and childbirth constitute the leading cause of death and disability among women in the age group of 15 to 49 years, and 99 per cent of these deaths occur in the developing world. The problem is particularly acute in Africa and South Asia, said Tinker.

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