The World Health Organization claims in a report that progress on maternal and newborn health is stalling internationally. In a document published last month, agency representatives identified “extraordinarily high” rates of avoidable maternal fatalities, stillbirths, and infant deaths.
According to the organization, there were 4.5 million maternal and baby fatalities globally in 2020 alone, including 290,000 maternal deaths, 1.9 million stillbirths, and 2.3 million neonatal deaths.
The report evaluated the status of the UN’s efforts to reduce maternal mortality, put an end to the deaths of infants and children under the age of 5, and decrease stillbirths globally. In order to achieve this, member states have established healthcare goals in a number of areas, such as prenatal care, the presence of qualified medical personnel at every birth, and postnatal care for babies.
The WHO cautions that these targets are proving challenging to achieve. According to the agency, gains over the last ten years were less rapid than those between 2000 and 2010, and the pandemic, climate change, humanitarian crises, and other issues could further impede growth.
The tweet below confirms the news:
10 Nations Account for 60% of Casualties
Ten nations—India, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, China, Indonesia, Afghanistan, and Tanzania—accounted for 60% of the casualties.
In order to fulfill goals, the world would need to continue lowering stillbirths and infant deaths while cutting maternal mortality by 11.6 percent yearly this decade, as opposed to a 1.3 percent decline annually between 2010 and 2020.
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However, the organization claims that with increased investments in healthcare funding and primary care, the restoration of services that were interrupted by the pandemic, and the fight against poverty, gender discrimination, and humanitarian crises globally, “there is the potential to save at least 7.8 million lives” by the end of the decade.