Ministry of Health Announces 75% Reduction in Maternal Mortality

The Afghan Ministry of Public Health says maternal mortality rates have declined by 75 percent over the past 17 years.

Speaking at International Nurses Day Occasion on Thursday, Mamosai Zewar, the deputy of Ministry of Heath said that one of the main factors in tumbling maternal mortality during childbirth is the increase in the number of midwives.

“1000 midwives work in government hospitals and clinics, and another 20,000 in private health centers”, she said.
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Ms Zewar added that, in 2005, Afghanistan was considered the world’s second largest country in terms of maternal and child mortality, but with the increase of midwives, maternal and child mortality rates have dropped significantly.

Ms Zewar emphasized that on every hundred thousand births, 396 mothers die now, while the figure reached to 1600 in past 17 years.

Improving maternal mortality rate along with infant mortality and other health indicators falls in the Sustainable Development Goal 3, of which 3.1 is to reduce the global maternal mortality ratio to less than 70 per 100000 live births by 2030.

First Lady Bibi Gul Rula Ghani on Thursday also said that according to official states, health conditions of mothers and kids have improved in recent years and the decrease in mortality rate indicates the real services provided by midwives.

She said during a conference in Kabul today that on her provincial visit she noted that women have great potential, having enough knowledge and education, thus more opportunities should be provided to women in order to take part in development of the country.

“My request from the midwives is to improve and enhance their capacity and knowledge, because in the emergency situation further knowledge is required. I support the efforts put by Afghanistan Midwives Association and urge the partner agencies including MoPH to develop a system that deals with today’s needs. The midwives ensure the safety of our future generations”, she said.

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