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Every 2 minutes a woman dies in pregnancy, childbirth: UNO

GENEVA: Every two minutes a woman dies from complications during pregnancy or childbirth, even though the maternal death rate has fallen by a third in 20 years, the United Nations (UN) said on Thursday.

Rates fell significantly between 2000 and 2015, but largely stagnated between 2016 and 2020 — and have even reversed in some regions, the UN says.

The all-cause maternal mortality rate fell by 34.3% over a 20-year period — from 339 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2000 to 223 maternal deaths in 2020, according to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO) and other UN agencies.

Still, nearly 800 women died a day in 2020 — or about one every two minutes.

Belarus saw the biggest drop – down 95.5% – while Venezuela saw the biggest rise. Between 2000 and 2015, the largest increase was in the United States.

“While pregnancy should be a time of great hope and a positive experience for all women, tragically it still remains a shockingly dangerous experience for millions around the world,” said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

“These new statistics demonstrate the urgent need to ensure every woman and girl has access to critical health services… and that they can fully exercise their reproductive rights.”

According to the report, between 2016 and 2020, the maternal mortality rate fell in only two of the eight UN regions: Australia and New Zealand by 35% and Central and South Asia by 16%.

– ‘Ruthless’ –

The rate increased by 17% in Europe and North America and by 15% in Latin America and the Caribbean. Elsewhere it stagnated.

The two European countries seeing a “significant increase” are Greece and Cyprus, the report’s author Jenny Cresswell told journalists.

Maternal mortality remains largely concentrated in the poorest regions of the world and in conflict-affected countries.

Around 70% of the deaths recorded in 2020 occurred in sub-Saharan Africa, where the rate is “136 times higher” than Australia and New Zealand, Cresswell said.

Rates were more than double the global average in Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen – all of which face severe humanitarian crises.

Major bleeding, infection, complications from unsafe abortions and underlying diseases such as HIV/AIDS are among the leading causes of death – all of which are largely preventable and treatable, according to the report.

The WHO said it was “crucial” for women to be in control of their reproductive health – particularly whether and when they should have children, so they can plan and plan childbirth to protect their health.

Natalia Kanem, head of the UN Population Fund, said the rate of “unnecessarily” dying women was “irresponsible”.

“We can and must do better by investing urgently in family planning and filling the global shortage of 900,000 midwives,” she said.

While the report covers data up to 2020, WHO’s Anshu Banerjee told journalists that statistics since then have been grim due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic crisis.

Source: Crypto News Deutsch

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