Philippines struggles in reducing maternal deaths-A A +A
Monday, August 6, 2012
THE Millennium Development Goal 5 (MDG 5) is still a long struggle for the Philippine government as the country is still lagging behind the target of reducing maternal mortality rate.
Data from the United Nations Fund for Population Agency revealed that 11 mothers die every day due to maternity-related causes.
During the 2011 Family Health Survey, a drastic increase of maternal mortality rate (MMR) was reported in 2011 with 221 deaths out of 100,000 births compared to 2009 with only 162 deaths, far from the 52 deaths per 100,000 live births of the MDG.
Under the MDG, maternal health is one of the important indicators that a government has performed well by improving the health condition of the people. This meets the global set of targets for reducing poverty.
In a report, President Benigno Aquino III said the government already spent P15 billion for construction and improvement of health facilities nationwide including health centers with operating rooms to prevent maternal deaths.
In Cagayan de Oro, Jane Gacus, statistician III of the City Health Department, said maternal deaths decreased in 2011 compared to last year.
Gacus said they have recorded 22 deaths in 2010 compared to only 16 in 2011.
The decrease, Gacus added, was due to the active participation and involvement of barangay health workers and the rising number of lying-in clinics in the city.
The Philippines is among the 189 countries that signed the Millennium Declaration in 2000 that has a set of eight time-bound, concrete and specific goals aimed at reducing, if not totally eradicating, extreme poverty by 2015.
Afghanistan ranked first in MMR with 1,400 deaths, followed by Somalia. The Philippines is on the 75th place in MMR.
Causes of maternal deaths are hemorrhage, sepsis, obstructed labor, hypertensive disorders in pregnancy, and complications of unsafe abortion, most of which are preventable with proper diagnosis and intervention.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 06, 2012.