7 August 2017

Zimbabwe: Maternal Deaths Top 176

Over 170 expecting mothers died giving birth since the beginning of the year,according to statistics compiled by the Ministry of Health and Child Care in its weekly disease update.

"The Ministry of Health and Child Care weekly disease report has shown that two maternal deaths were reported during the week ending July 23, 2017.

"The deaths were reported from Harare Central Hospital. The cumulative figures for maternal deaths are 176," read the report.

At high risk of maternal deaths are adolescents, according to the Zimbabwe National Family Planning Council.

The ZNFPC programmes manager, Mr Kefas Chinana, is quoted in the ministry's disease update report as saying at least 24 percent of maternal deaths recorded were of girls aged between 15 and 19.

"These maternal deaths are highly found in teenagers because they lack knowledge on family planning.

"Statistics show that 41 percent of the young people aged between 15-19 have little knowledge on family planning," he said.

Mr Chinana said ZNFPC had various programmes countrywide meant to sensitise parents on the importance of engaging their children on sexual reproductive health issues since they were now becoming sexually active at a very tender age.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines maternal death as the death of a woman while pregnant or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy.

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