According to a new report by UN agencies released on Thursday (February 23), a woman dies during pregnancy or childbirth every two minutes. The research ‘Trends in Maternal Mortality’ also emphasises that unless significant progress is done globally to reach global targets for reducing maternal fatalities, the lives of over one million more women may be in danger by 2030.
The paper includes data on maternal deaths from 2000 through 2020 at the local, national, and international levels. In 2020, there were over 287,000 maternal fatalities reported worldwide. Most of these fatalities have been linked to the most impoverished areas and conflict zones.
‘While pregnancy should be a time of immense hope and a positive experience for all women, it is tragically still a shockingly dangerous experience for millions around the world who lack access to high quality, respectful health care,’ Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), was quoted as saying in an official release.
In her response, UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem stressed upon the need for political will to face the challenge. ‘It is unacceptable that so many women continue to die needlessly in pregnancy and childbirth. Over 280,000 fatalities in a single year is unconscionable. We can and must do better by urgently investing in family planning and filling the global shortage of 900,000 midwives so that every woman can get the lifesaving care she needs,’ she said.