An accident that kills 20 passengers in the country hits the headlines instantly and  remains in the  news for days.

Yet nearly an equal number of women die in childbirth every day but do not receive as much attention, medical experts note.

Worse still, this happens when the healthcare system is working at optimum level.

A confidential Ministry of Health report derived from the District Health Information Systems (DHIS2) shows that 857 women died in childbirth in the first half of this year, up from 413 for the equivalent period last year.

It's a scary statistic-- in Missouri, 45 moms die for every 100,000 live births. That's significantly higher than the country's average, and no one really knows why.

Source: | Author: Kay Quinn

You might think dying during pregnancy or childbirth has gone the way of the horse and buggy, or disappeared with the invention of antibiotics.

But a 5 On Your Side investigation uncovered a shocking health trend. The number of moms dying of pregnancy complications in the state of Missouri spiked dramatically in the past five years.

Life in rural America can be tough, with challenges starting right from birth. Increasingly, rural women lack access to maternity services, jeopardizing their health and that of their newborns at a time when U.S. maternal mortality is rising.

Giving birth is hard enough, but racing 100 miles to the nearest hospital down winding country roads is a particularly harrowing way to experience labor. Evidence confirms what common sense suggests: Drive time affects outcomes. A Canadian study shows that the babies of mothers who travel more than an hour to give birth are more likely to require intensive care or to die within their first year of life.

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines provides the shortest maternity leave in Southeast Asia and it's about time that this be changed, a coalition of women's organizations and labor groups said.

The existing law only grants 60 days of paid leave for women who just gave birth. This is just a third of the 180-day leave given by Vietnam, which tops other countries within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

In the remote farming village of Sakreang, in Cambodia’s far north-east, Romam Pcheuk visits pregnant women in their homes.

“I keep my eye on the girls who are pale, and those that get pregnant very young,” she explained. “It’s my job to warn them of danger signs.”

Ms. Pcheuk once helped women give birth the traditional way – at home, often using dangerous practices.

“I pushed their bellies down harder when the baby wouldn’t come out,” she remembered. “If there were problems, it got dangerous. We didn’t have any equipment or medicine on hand.”

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