maternal mortality

Nigeria still rated high in maternal death globally

Nigeria rated high in maternal death globally

maternal mortality
Nigeria rated high in maternal mortality
photo credit: WNN

Nigeria still in position number four (of the 181 listed countries), with 814 deaths daily, despite reported improvement in the global healthcare system in many countries. These figures relate to the maternal mortality ratio (MMRatio), which is “the annual number of female deaths per 100,000 live births from any cause related to or aggravated by pregnancy or its management (excluding accidental or incidental causes).

The MMRatio includes deaths during pregnancy, childbirth, or within 42 days of termination of pregnancy, irrespective of the duration and site of the pregnancy, for a specified year.”

Thus, of the 181 countries listed in the Factbook, African countries occupy the first 27 positions with the highest number of daily deaths at between 398 and 1,360, while 48 countries have above 120 deaths.

Sierra Leone, which is number one on the log, has the highest number of deaths at 1,360, and Poland, Iceland, Greece and Finland have the lowest of three deaths per day, and thus fill up the positions 181, 180, 179 and 178, respectively.

Captivatingly, war-ravaged and unstable Libya is the only African country with a single digit death rate of nine per day, and occupies the 151 position on the log of maternal mortality worldwide.

Consider the following scenario: In the year 2000, India had the highest estimated number of maternal mortality, followed by Nigeria. However, while India has moved down to number 56 on the log with 174 deaths per day, Nigeria only dropped to position number four (of the 181 listed countries), with 814 deaths daily – a position it also held in 2015.

Among the main causes are: Postpartum (occurring after childbirth) complications, such as severe bleeding (haemorrhage) and infection; unsafe abortion; diseases, like high blood pressure, malaria and HIV/AIDS during pregnancy; inadequate prenatal care; inaccessible medical and sanitary services; and failure of health practitioners to detect early warning signs.

One or a combination of these factors could result in complications before, during and after childbirth.
The high maternal mortality in Nigeria is a reflection of failure of the governments, both federal and states, to sufficiently provide funding and facilities for healthcare delivery, especially for expectant mothers, to prevent complications during pregnancy and childbirth.


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