Swedish Professor Attending Conference in Indonesia Highlighted the Need to Reduce Maternal Death

Experts such as Professor Staffan Bergström from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden attending a three day conference in Bali, Indonesia have highlighted how common poor health care was in many developing countries resulting in too many children and mothers are dying due to poor maternal health worldwide.
Giving a global view, Professor Staffan Bergström from the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden, called maternal death “a crime of neglect, ignorance, indifference and inaction”.
“A society that tolerates maternal death is violating a human right: Women’s right to survive,” he added.
Bergström said more people died annually from maternal disease and poor delivery care than from malaria and tuberculosis together.  “This is the scandal of our time,” he asserted.
Reducing maternal mortality is one of the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and leading development institutions, to be achieved by 2015.
The goals also include reducing extreme poverty, halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education.
According to a 2003 joint report by WHO, UNICEF and UNFPA the world maternal death average is 400, the average for developed regions is 20, and for developing regions 440.
In regard to female mortality during childbirth, a WHO estimate put the total at some 536,000 worldwide in 2005. Of these deaths, 86 percent occurred in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia and less than 1 percent in more developed countries.

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