New UN study released on 12 November 2015 reveals significant decline in maternal mortality – but much remains to be done
New estimates in Trends in Maternal Mortality 1990 to 2015 released by the UN Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter-agency Group (MMEIG) indicate that maternal mortality has fallen by 44 per cent since 1990.
Maternal deaths around the world dropped from about 532 000 in 1990 to an estimated 303 000 this year, according to the report, the last in a series that has looked at progress under the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This equates to an estimated global maternal mortality ratio (MMR) of 216 maternal deaths per 100 000 live births, down from 385 in 1990.
Maternal mortality is defined as the death of a woman during pregnancy, childbirth or within 6 weeks after birth.
This new report is accompanied by a Lancet paper available online (Global, regional, and national levels and trends in maternal mortality between 1990 and 2015, with scenario-based projections to 2030: a systematic analysis by the UN Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter-Agency Group.
This new release provides the most up-to-date comprehensive information on maternal mortality worldwide, including a public database containing 3634 country-years of data for 183 countries taking into account all available nationally-representative data from vital registration systems, population censuses, household surveys, and sample registration systems.
The United Nations Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter-agency Group (MMEIG) was formed to share data on maternal mortality, harmonise estimates within the UN system, improve methods for maternal mortality estimation and generate internationally comparable MMR estimates. MMEIG, which is led by the World Health Organization (WHO), comprises the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the World Bank Group, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the World Bank Group and the United Nations Population Division (UNPD).
For more information, including estimates, empirical data and methodology, visit: http://www.maternalmortalitydata.org/