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Midwives saves lives

Midwives saves lives

A mother receives IPPF treatment on International Day of the Midwife

On International Day of the Midwife IPPF recognises the world's midwives and their contribution to improved reproductive, maternal and newborn health. 

The day's theme for 5 May 2013 is 'Midwives saves lives'.  Over 287,000 women and 3 million infants around the world die each year as a result of preventable pregnancy and childbirth complications. Most of these deaths would be prevented if there were enough qualified and adequately resourced midwives. 

When mothers and newborns die, approximately US$15.5 billion in potential productivity is lost each year. Infants of mothers who die in childbirth are more likely to die within 2 years.

IPPF stands with UNFPA and the International Confederation of Midwives in celebrating the life-saving results of qualified midwifery skills. Through its new manifesto, Vision 2020, IPPF is driving forward the sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) agenda. This global call to action asks leaders prioritizes maternal health and invest in SRHR as the development goal for post 2015. Through family planning 54 million unintended pregnancies could be prevented in developing countries. 

7 million women suffer injury, infection or disability from maternal causes. The locations and levels of maternal mortality indicate serious inequalities throughout the world. WHO estimates the chances of dying due to pregnancy or childbirth in Somalia is 6% and is 3% in sub-Saharan Africa. This same chance in Europe is 0.02%.

To ensure universal coverage for maternity care an estimated 350,000 extra midwives are needed. IPPF is working towards a future of global equality. Sign up to get involved or for more information.