A new set of standards has been established that calls for aggressive reductions in pregnancy-related mortality rates.
The United Nations and the World Bank said this week that since 1990, a woman’s chances of dying while giving birth fell 43 percent worldwide, says a story on reuters.com.
Still, only nine countries have met the original goal of reducing the rate by 75 percent, a pledge made in 2000 by the UN member states to cut the death rate of women dying during pregnancy, childbirth, or the following 6 weeks after childbirth.
The plan was to reach that goal by the year 2015 as part of theh Millennium Development Goals (MDGS).
The nine countries that made the goal were, The Maldives, Bhutan, Cambodia, Cape Verde, East Timor, Iran, Laos, Mongolia, and Rwanda. Each of those countries reduced the rate of mortality between 78 and 90 percent.
Worldwide, it is estimated that 303,000 will die this year, down from 532,000 in 1990. That calculates to 216 per 100,000 live births, according to the report. East Asia saw the biggest improvement, cutting their rate from 90 to 27 per 100,000 births.
A new set of standards, called the Sustainable Development Goals, has been adopted by world leaders this past September, that targets a rate of less than 70 for every 100,000 live births across the globe.
That means a 7.5 percent drop per year, starting in 2016, which is more than three times the pace of reduction established from 1990 to 2015, at 2.3 percent.
Women in the United States are twice as likely to die from pregnancy related causes than their counterparts in Canada, continued the report. The US was one of 13 countries that had a higher rate of mortality in 2015 than they did in 1990, but it was still well under the target rate of 70 per 100,000, with the US rate at 14 and Canada’s rate at 7.
The worldwide leaders in low pregnancy-related mortality rates are Iceland, Finland, Poland and Greece, with just 3 per 100,000 live births. Belarus, with 4 over the 25-year period, was close behind.
The survey was headed by the World Health Organization.