Safe Motherhood: Improving Access to Emergency Obstetric Care: Round Table 2
Abstract1. The magnitude of the problem of maternal and newborn morbidity and mortality is not fullyappreciated.2. Maternal mortality is one of the leading public health problems in developing countries. Deathassociated with pregnancy, delivery and the first six weeks after delivery still affects approximately600 000 women in the developing world.1 Nearly half of these deaths occur in the African Region, aregion that constitutes only 12% of the world’s population and only 17% of the world’s annualbirths.3. Africa is the only region where there has been no improvement in maternal deaths for morethan a decade. Indeed, the average maternal mortality ratio has increased from 870/100 0002 livebirths in 1990, to 1000/100 000 live births in 2001.34. For every maternal death, at least twenty women are left incapacitated by the sequelae, interalia, obstetric fistulae, chronic pelvic pain syndrome and infertility. The majority of these occur inpoor women living in rural areas or disadvantaged and underserved communities in urban centres.5. The main direct causes of maternal mortality in the African Region are haemorrhage duringpregnancy, delivery and after delivery (25%); sepsis (15%); unsafe abortion (13%); pregnancyinducedhypertension (12%); and obstructed labour (8%). The indirect causes include malaria,anaemia, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS.
Regional Committee for Africa, 53. (2003). Safe Motherhood: Improving Access to Emergency Obstetric Care: Round Table 2. WHO. Regional Office for Africa. https://apps.who.int/iris/handle/10665/93313
DescriptionRegional Committee for Africa Fifty-third SessionJohannesburg, South Africa, 1–5 September 2003, Provisional agenda item 11.2
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World Health Organization; United Nations Population Fund; Mailman School of Public Health. Averting Maternal Death and Disability; United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) (World Health OrganizationWorld Health Organization, 2009)