Wednesday, October 07, 2009

2 million babies and mothers die a child birth

A new study says that the number of deaths due to childbirth outnumber child deaths due to malaria or AIDS. Over 2 million children and mothers die from childbirth complications.

The study says that this is due to lack of medical care and professionals in rural areas. Most of the deaths occur in remote villages in Africa or Southern Asia where there are no skilled health workers.

From this Associated Press article that we found at WISN, writer Celean Jacobson reveals the statistics. For more information on poverty effects on child birth can be found at the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics website .

The study, released Tuesday at the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics world congress being held in Cape Town, also showed that such deaths could be easily avoided.

"The world will continue to miss the unheard cry of the 230 babies who die every hour from childbirth complications," unless there is better planning and implementation of policies, according to the study.

Some 1.02 million babies are stillborn and another 904,000 die soon after birth. By comparison, 820,000 children die from malaria and 208,000 die from HIV/AIDS worldwide.

About 42 percent of the world's 536,000 maternal deaths also occur during childbirth, according to the study. Deaths in Africa and South Asia account for three-quarters of the maternal and infant deaths.

The research was led by Save the Children, the Gates Foundation and Johns Hopkins University with investigators from a dozen countries. It was published in the October edition of the federation's journal.

The report said that many of the deaths could be avoided with improvements in basic health care, and training for local health care workers to perform emergency cesarean sections and other lifesaving techniques.

Poverty is one of the main causes of these deaths. In wealthier countries most women give birth with a skilled attendant while in poor countries, few women do.

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