Maternal Mortality Falls by Over Half in Russia

GORKI, June 10 (RIA Novosti) – Maternal mortality in Russia has fallen by 55 percent since 2005, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Monday.

“We recently obtained data on a decrease in maternal mortality,” Medvedev said at a meeting of deputy premiers. “Since 2005, or in essence since the start of the national healthcare project, it dropped 2.2-fold.”

In 23 Russian regions, the maternal mortality figures have fallen to the level of West European countries, he added.

Medvedev linked the positive dynamics to a state program to build 23 perinatal centers and a program to improve the supply of equipment and medicine to maternity centers.

“The dynamic is good, it needs to be anchored,” he said.

According to a 2012 World Health Organization (WHO) factsheet, approximately 800 women across the world die every day from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth, with 99 percent of the deaths occurring in developing countries.

“Skilled care before, during and after childbirth can save the lives of women and newborn babies,” the UN health agency said.

“Between 1990 and 2010, maternal mortality worldwide dropped by almost 50 percent,” the WHO said, adding 287,000 women died during and following pregnancy and childbirth in 2010.

Many of these deaths occurred in “low-resource settings,” and “most could have been prevented,” it said.


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