Achieving MDG-5 by 2015 | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 05, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, September 05, 2012

Achieving MDG-5 by 2015

Bangladesh has made very significant progress in reducing maternal deaths. The rate has declined to 40% within 9 years which is a great achievement. But still more than 7000 mothers die each year due to pregnancy-related complications. Study shows that 90% of such deaths can be prevented by making their health and wellbeing a priority. Is it not a big tragedy? We have only three years left to achieve MDG-5. In order to achieve the target, we have to reduce maternal mortality rate by 25 percent by 2015. A study found that women's low status in society, poor quality of maternity care services, lack of trained providers, low uptake of services by women, and unfriendly hospitals -- all contribute to the high rate of maternal deaths. The situation is also compounded by strong cultural and traditional beliefs that deter women from delivering at healthcare clinics or with medically trained attendants. Under these circumstances, if we want to achieve the MDG-5 by the stipulated time, the government, national and international organisations including UN organisations should come forward and work hard together and invest in safe motherhood programmes to drastically reduce the rate of maternal deaths.

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