Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Why Babies Die

The latest report about perinatal mortality in the UK has just been published by Confidential Enquiry into Maternal and Child Health (CEMACH). The definition of perinatal mortality in this report is death of babies from 24 weeks of pregnancy to seven days after the baby's birth.

I will be honest and admit I have only skimmed through it but some interesting points were:
  • women under 20 and over 40 years of age are at greater risk of losing babies
  • maternal obesity (BMI>30) is a risk factor
  • babies born to Black and Asian women have a higher death rate, as well as those women who are socially deprived
  • incidence of deaths when the mothers are in labour have remained the same since 2000
  • most of the deaths of babies born at home are homebirths that are not planned.


Aditi said...

Maternal and child Health is of utmost importance.
Its startling to know that more than half a million women die in pregnancy and childbirth
every year - that's one death every minute. I also came across a community on orkut which
represents the UN campaign against poverty of which child and maternal health is one of
the 7 major goals.

Sarah Stewart said...

Thank you very much for that, Aditi. I have just joined the Global Alliance for Nursing and Midwifery. This is an online resource for people interetesed in the issues of improving health for people, especially in developing countries.

I have only just joined it, so cant make any informed comments about how useful the web site is.

The other organisation I would like to look at more closely is White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood, which is an organization working to improve the health of mothers:

They produce a monthly electronic newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/5tt9a2