Nigeria is one of the countries with the highest maternal mortality rates in the world, with the country accounting for about 20 per cent of global maternal deaths. Daily Trust Saturday, in this report, examines some of the factors responsible for this ugly trend.
Maternal mortality ratio (MMR) in several low-and-middle-income countries is alarming, with about 34% of global maternal deaths occurring in Nigeria and India alone.
Traditional birth attendants at a training
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the MMR of Nigeria is 814 deaths (per 100,000 live births).
The lifetime risk of a Nigerian woman dying during pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum or post-abortion is one in 22, in contrast to the lifetime risk in developed countries estimated at 1 in 4,900.
Nigerian women are also said to be 500 times more likely to lose their lives in childbirth when compared to most advanced nations of the world.
An online research media, indexmundi puts Nigeria’s maternal mortality rate at 917 deaths/100,000 live births.
Speaking on the increasing rate of maternal mortality in the country, the Programme and Communication Officer, Resource Centre for Human Rights and Civic Education, Mr Armsfree Ajanaku said, from their experience as an organization that has been working to mitigate the devastating impact of scourge of maternal and child health in Nigeria, they have observed a number of factors contributing to the situation.
“In the first place, the poor governance of the Primary Healthcare Sector is a major issue. A situation where PHCs, which are supposed to be the first port of call for expectant mothers and infants are ill equipped to respond to basic treatment needs, exposes large number of mothers and babies to untimely death,” he said.