Written by Ijeoma UKAZU

Maternal mortality: Nigeria bears 14% of global burden

Worried by the Maternal Mortality Rate, MMR, in Nigeria, a medical doctor with the Lagos Island Maternity Hospital, Dr Olufunke Olamigoke, has said the country accounts for 14% of global maternal deaths, with 10 countries with the highest maternal mortality in Africa.

 

Speaking to journalists in Lagos during a media roundtable on family planning, Olamigoke said, "according to data from United Nations Economic Commissions for Africa, an estimated 358,000 women die each year throughout the world from complication of pregnancy and childbirth."

 

Similarly, she said that the National Demographic Health Survey states that maternal mortality ratio was 576 per 100,000 live births for the seven year period preceding the survey.

She added that the lifetime risk of maternal mortality indicates that 1 in 30 women will have a death related to pregnancy or child bearing.

Olamigoke listed some causes of maternal mortality and its contributory percentage as; obstetrics hemorrhage 23 percent, hypertensive disorders 20 percent, unsafe abortions 13 percent, obstructed labour 11 percent, postpartum infection 13 percent, anemia 11 percent, as well as malaria, HIV, diabetes amongst others amount to 10 percent.

She stressed that family planning has a huge role in reducing maternal mortality by reducing exposure to incidence of pregnancy, reducing vulnerability to abortion risk, postponement of pregnancy during prematurity of pelvis development by delaying the first birth.

Giving further statistics on maternal mortality, Mr Ogunloye Oyebola from budgiT said, "World Health Organization along with UNICEF 2015 data puts Nigeria's Maternal Mortality Rate at 58,000 with the Northeast having 1,549 per 100,000 while the South West at 165 per 100,000."

According to him, "it is more alarming that Nigeria is the second highest contributor to maternal mortality globally as every day, approximately 2,300 under five year old and 145 women of child bearing age die in the country."

 

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