Maternal mortality in developing countries: challenges in scaling-up priority interventions


Although maternal mortality is a significant global health issue, achievements in mortality decline to date have been inadequate. A review of the interventions targeted at maternal mortality reduction demonstrates that most developing countries face tremendous challenges in the implementation of these interventions, including the availability of unreliable data and the shortage in human and financial resources, as well as limited political commitment. Examples from developing countries, such as Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Honduras, demonstrate that maternal mortality will decline when appropriate strategies are in place. Such achievable strategies need to include redoubled commitments on the part of local, national and global political bodies, concrete investments in high-yield and cost-effective interventions and the delegation of some clinical tasks from higher-level healthcare providers to mid- or lower-level healthcare providers, as well as improved health-management information systems.

Published in Women’s Health (2010) 6(2), 311–327.

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Ndola Prata
Paige Passano
Amita Sreenivas
Caitlin Elisabeth Gerdts
Publication date: 
February 9, 2010
Publication type: 
Journal Article