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.”

Today a new national five-year strategy and a policy for Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCAH) was launched in Sierra Leone, which aims to help reduce maternal and child deaths in the country.

Sierra Leone currently has among the highest rates of maternal and child mortality globally, as well as high incidence of teenage pregnancy. Current estimates suggest that up to 6 percent of women in Sierra Leone will die from maternal causes during their reproductive life. Based on the latest UN figures released, the country has an estimated under-5 mortality rate of 114/1000 live births which means that 1 in 9 children lose their life before their fifth birthday.

The use of biologic therapy for rheumatoid arthritis during pregnancy did not significantly increase risk for developing serious or opportunistic infections among infants, according to findings presented at the American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting.

“The question we are attempting to address with this analysis is whether or not patients who take one of the biologic medications during pregnancy are at increased risk of having an infant with a serious or opportunistic infection in the first year of life,” Christina Chambers, PhD, MPH, co-director of the Center for Better Beginnings and director of the University of California – San Diego ACTRI Center for Life Course Research, said during her presentation.

30 October 2017 – Pakistan, together with all other countries in the world, is committed to achieving the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which are ambitious and demand fast track accelerated actions. There is a dire need for urgency and commitment at all levels to achieve the goals.

Alison ChuMD, FAAPNeoReviews Early Career Physician

Last year, I was receiving sign out for a low-acuity Los Angeles County NICU, when I realized that more than half of the neonates hospitalized there had been admitted for neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) monitoring and/or treatment. Moreover, I found two additional things to be striking: (1) the broad range of substances, licit to illicit, that the mothers had been taking during pregnancy, and (2) the prolonged hospital stay for these infants, with some having been in the unit for more than a month.

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