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Africa

2013-02-01

AFRICA/ETHIOPIA - One of the five countries in the world where there is 50% of maternal mortality

Addis Ababa (Agenzia Fides) - Every year, about 25,000 women die from complications during childbirth, and another 500 thousand suffer long-term disability due to pregnancy and birth complications. This is what emerges from the estimates of the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA). According to a study carried out in 2010, Ethiopia is one of the five countries in the world where there is 50% of maternal mortality. The African country in fact has a very precarious health system and for women this causes complications before, during and after childbirth. In 2011, there were 676 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births compared to 673 in 2005. Studies show that the five main causes of this phenomenon in Ethiopia are due to spontaneous abortion, ruptured uterus, puerperal sepsis, postpartum hemorrhage and preeclampsia/eclampsia. To try to limit these problems, the government, through 30 thousand skilled health workers verifies the efficiency of the healthcare system for mothers and children. However, until now, according to the Ethiopia Demographic and Health Survey (EDHS), only 1% of women give birth assisted by a qualified doctor because each of them has to follow about 2500 people. In rural areas of the country 83% of the 87 million inhabitants of the country live, while in urban areas 45% of births is assisted by skilled personnel, only 3% in rural areas. In a 2009 study conducted by the University of Addis Ababa, in the rural region of Tigray 80% of all maternal deaths happen at home, and 50% of these occur for late transportation to medical facilities. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 01/02/2013)

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