North America

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says 800 women still die daily from pregnancy, childbirth complications

UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, on Thursday, May 14, in New York, called for continued efforts by UN member states to improve maternal health.

Ban made the call at a high-level luncheon for his ''Every Woman Every Child Every Initiative.’’

He said, "we all believe in a world where every woman, child and young person can thrive.

"We have a unified vision to end preventable maternal, newborn, child and adolescent deaths.

"We have a passion to improve the health and well-being of women, children and adolescents within a generation.’’

The UN boss called for a unified vision to end preventable maternal, newborn, child and adolescent deaths.

"The Every Woman Every Child initiative has helped us to build this momentum, creating a global community, working under one umbrella.

"Maternal and child death rates have fallen in everyone of the Global Strategy’s 49 target countries since 2010.

"This progress is fragile and our work under the health MDGs remains unfinished.

"I want to see continued accelerated action to sustain these gains.’’

Ban said some 800 women still die each day from causes related to pregnancy or childbirth.

Adolescent girls, he said, are more vulnerable to HIV infection, sexual violence and harmful practices.

He also said that women and children are up to 14 times more likely to die in a disaster, noting that "this is why we are updating the Global Strategy and Every Woman Every Child in September in support of Sustainable Development Goals.

"We must end all preventable deaths of women, children and adolescents; we must realise their full potential to thrive and exercise their rights.

"To accomplish these aims, we must work effectively across sectors and through partnerships.’’

The updated Global Strategy, he said, would place new attention on adolescents’ needs, inequalities, and how to respond more effectively in humanitarian crises and fragile settings.

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