World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Maternal Mortality In Eastern Europe

Maternal Mortality In Eastern Europe, Central Asia Halved But Still High – UN Report

New York, Nov 12 2009 12:10PM The number of women in Eastern Europe and Central Asia dying from complications in childbirth and pregnancy has been slashed by more than half over the last 10 years, participants at a high-level United Nations gathering in Istanbul heard today.

Despite cutting maternal mortality rates from 51 per 100,000 live births to 24, a recent UN Population Fund (UNFPA) progress report noted that many women in vulnerable groups remain at risk.

In response, decision-makers and government officials from 20 countries attending the UNFPA meeting in Istanbul pledged to step up the fight against needless deaths and suffering resulting from pregnancy and childbirth.

“Women who are poor, young, migrants, refugees and those living in remote rural areas do not have sufficient access to much-needed sexual and reproductive health services,” UNFPA Regional Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia Thea Fierens told delegates at the opening of the two-day meeting on maternal health and universal access to reproductive health.

In a statement of commitment issued late last night, delegates at the meeting recognized that investment in the health and rights of women is “smart” economics and that family planning is one of the most cost-effective investments in reducing the maternal deaths that continue to affect the region.

The UNFPA report said that in the last 15 years, the number of induced abortions has dropped from 1,049 per 1,000 live births to 493, and contraceptive use by women has increased, yet the region still has one of the highest abortion rates in the world.

The report noted that in many countries in the region, there is limited access to modern contraception and other reproductive health products. In addition, the quality of antenatal coverage and skilled birth assistance varies widely depending on whether women live in rural areas, their level of education, their age or socio-economic status.

“Investing in access to voluntary family planning and modern contraception is one of the most cost-effective ways for countries to make progress,” said Ms. Fierens. “Proper access to contraceptives not only saves lives, reduces the number of abortions and promotes equality, it is also a cost-effective investment and sound economics.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Covid: 250 Groups Urge WTO Chief To Ditch Pharma-Friendly Approach And Embrace Vaccine Patent Waiver

by Jake Johnson, staff writer An international coalition of 250 civil society groups on Tuesday urged the head of the World Trade Organization to embrace a temporary suspension of coronavirus vaccine-related patents, warning against pursuit of a voluntary ... More>>

Samoa’s Stunning Election Result: On The Verge Of A New Ruling Party For The First Time In 40 Years

Tamasailau Suaalii Sauni , University of Auckland and Patricia A. O'Brien , Georgetown University Samoan politics is on a knife edge. After the country voted in general elections on April 9, counting so far has resulted in a dead heat between the two ... More>>

Timor-Leste: UN Agencies Support Response In Wake Of Deadly Floods

United Nations agencies in Timor-Leste are supporting response efforts, as floods and landslides left widespread damage across the country, including in the capital, Dili. According to media reports, at least 21 people died in the country and many ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

Awake At Night: S3-Episode 21: There Is Hope

Brazzaville visit to CSI Pilote du Diabete with Health workers at a local government clinic. 2018 - Photo: ©CSI/Dr. Soumya Swaminathan 'When it comes to a pandemic, it really needs global collaboration and solidarity because the pathogens and viruses More>>

UN: Growing Calls For Revamping Development Financing To Ensure Sustainable Global Recovery From COVID-19 Pandemic

Forum to highlight new initiatives to tackle inequalities exacerbated by pandemic With many economies reeling as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and as inequalities continue to widen, world leaders will discuss options to unlock concrete investments ... More>>

How Can We Vaccinate The World? Five Challenges Facing The UN-Backed COVAX Programme

The aim of the UN-backed COVAX scheme is to get two billion vaccine doses into the arms of around a quarter of the population of poorer countries by the end of 2021. What are the main challenges that need to be overcome, if this historic global effort ... More>>