PAHO and WHO launch new maternal mortality initiative

A new scheme, entitled "Zero maternal deaths from haemorrhage", has been launched by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

The focus of the initiative is to boost healthcare access for pregnant women in the Americas and improve the quality of care received by women with hemorrhagic complications, the Jamaica Observer reported.

"No woman should die in the process of becoming a mother," said Carissa F. Etienne, director of PAHO.

"We have the knowledge and tools to keep women from dying from these preventable causes.

"We need to promote effective practices and improve access to sexual and reproductive health services, so women can plan their families as they wish."

The scheme is currently focusing its efforts on Peru, Haiti, Bolivia, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic, which all have high maternal mortality rates.

A lot of progress has been made with tackling maternal mortality. According to WHO, between 1990 and 2013, maternal mortality rates dropped by 50 per cent.