Welcome -

Welcome to my blog about female/maternal global health. For some time now, I have been intrigued by medicine - both the history of past medical practices and the future that we are working toward. As a result, I have begun to look into the topic of maternal health - a plight that the world has struggled with for millennia. Although it has become clear that we, as a global society, have made tremendous headway in protecting women's health worldwide, there is still much to be done in order to completely eliminate the problem. In this blog I will summarize and discuss my research as well as debate/support the convictions of others. Through this project I strive to make the world more aware of the global issues surrounding maternal health and of that which each person can do in support. Thank you for visiting!

Researched information regarding Female/Maternal Health:

Researched Information:

- "Recent assessment of global statistics suggests that despite major gains, among the 75 so-called Countdown countries that have 98% of all maternal deaths and deaths among children younger than 5 years of age, only 17 are on track to reach the MDG 4 target for child mortality and only 9 are on track to reach the MDG 5 target for maternal mortality." (New England Journal of Medicine)

-Interesting question to consider throughout my research: "It’s the question I think about all the time,” says Faustina Fynn-Nyame, country director of Marie Stopes Kenya. “What is happening in the Middle East, Iraq and with Ebola, all the attention and focus on that. If the same level of attention was given to MDG five, we would have met the goal. But because it’s just poor African and Asian women dying, it’s allowed to carry on.” (The Guardian)

- "Almost 800 women die every day worldwide due to complications in pregnancy and childbirth." (WHO)

- "One third of total global deaths are in two countries: Nigeria (40,000) and India (50,000)." (WHO)

- "Lifetime risk of dying during pregnancy and childbirth: 1 in 3300 in Europe and 1 in 40 in Africa." (WHO)

- Women die from: 28% - Pre-existing medical conditions exacerbated by pregnancy (such as diabetes, malaria, HIV, obesity); 27% - severe bleeding; 14% - pregnancy-induced high blood pressure; 3% - blood clots; 8% - abortion complications; 9% - obstructed labor and other direct causes; 11% - infections (mostly after childbirth) (WHO)

- Things that are needed to save women's lives: quality care before, during, and after childbirth; safe blood supplies; contraception and safe abortion services; essential medicines such as antibiotics and oxytocin; every death counted and its cause recorded (WHO)

-"Millennium Development Goal 5 (MDG 5), improve maternal health, set the targets of reducing maternal mortality by 75% and achieving universal access to reproductive health by 2015.  By, so far progress in reducing mortality in developing countries and providing family planning services has been too slow to meet the targets ... WHO is supporting countries in delivering integrated, evidence-based and cost-effective care for mothers and babies during pregnancy, childbirth, and the postpartum period.  Investing health systems - especially in training midwifes and in making emergency obstetric care available round-the-clock - is key to reducing maternal mortality." (WHO)

-"Young women and girls are at heightened risk of complications and death during pregnancy and childbirth. These complications are the leading cause of death among girls 15-19 in low- and middle-income countries. Child marriage and taboos on adolescent sexuality contribute to teen pregnancies by denying girls the power, information, and tools to postpone childbearing." (genderhealth.org)

As Mahmoud Fathalla, past president of the International Federation of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, said:
"Women are not dying of diseases we can't treat. ... They are dying because societies have yet to make the decision that their lives are worth saving." (Amnesty International)
- "Globally, maternal deaths dropped 45% between 1990 and 2013. While substantial progress has been achieved in almost all regions, many countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, will fail to reach the Goal 5 target of reducing maternal mortality by 75% from 1990 to 2015. In fact, of all the MDGs, the least progress has been made toward the maternal health goal. Every day, nearly 800 women across the globe die due to complications during pregnancy and childbirth, and 99% of these deaths occur in developing countries. Many low-income countries have high rates of maternal mortality and high fertility, which are closely linked to high infant mortality and gender inequality. More than a quarter of girls and women in sub-Saharan Africa cannot access family planning services, fueling unplanned pregnancies and spreading HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases." (World Bank)

- "Almost 300,000 women died globally in 2013 from causes related to pregnancy and childbirth.  The proportion of deliveries in developing regions attended by skilled health personnel rose from 56 to 68 percent between 1990 and 2012.  In 2012, 49 million births in developing regions were not attended by skilled health personnel, and over 32 million of those births occurred in rural areas.  52 percent of pregnant women had four or more antenatal care visits during pregnancy in 2012, an increase from 37 percent in 1990." (United Nations Development Programme)

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