Major causes of maternal deaths globally
Figure 1.15 provides an overview of the main causes at a global level. Haemorrhage (ante and post partum) is the largest direct global cause of deaths at 27%, followed by hypertension (14%). In combination indirect causes also account for 27% of global deaths. There is an opportunity to refresh your understanding of direct and indirect causes in the reflection exercise below.
Distinguishing between direct and indirect maternal deaths
There are globally accepted definitions for both direct and indirect causes of maternal death which facilitate comparison and trend analysis at different levels. Defining the causes of deaths is also an integral part of ensuring effective health and social care systems for the reduction of deaths.
Major causes of maternal deaths regionally
Figure 1.16 presents regional data for the major causes of maternal death, arranged by region. Alternatively, you can view a comparison of causes across regions instead.
Major global causes of and trends in neonatal deaths
The previous section showed an overall downward trend in neonatal deaths. The following graph shows the major causes of neonatal mortality and trends over time. Deaths due to prematurity and due to birth asphyxia or trauma have seen the greatest reductions.
Neonatal deaths constitute 41.6% of all deaths for under-fives. So what are the major causes of neonatal mortality globally?
Figure 1.17 below shows you the major causes of neonatal mortality trends over time.
Distinguishing between early and late neonatal deaths
Figures 1.18 and 1.19 present data for neonatal deaths disaggregated by early and late neonatal groups, as presented by Oza et al, 2015:
Major causes of neonatal deaths globally
Figure 1.20 provides an overview of the main causes at a global level.
Are the existing post natal practices meeting international standards? Are they adequate for the specific needs?
- World Health Organization (WHO), (Website) Infant mortality data by country
- World Health Organization (WHO), (2011) National, regional, and worldwide estimates of stillbirth rates in 2009 with trends since 1995
- Wang, H., Liddell, C., Coates, M., Moobey, M., Levitz, C et al, (2014) Global, regional, and national levels of neonatal, infant, and under-5 mortality during 1990 – 2013: A systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013
- Say, L. Chou, D. Gemmill, A. Tuncalp, O. Moller, A. Daniels, J. Gulmezoglu, M. Temmerman, M. Alkema, L., (2014) Global causes of maternal death: a WHO systematic analysis
- Oza, S. Lawn, JE. Hogan, DR. Mathers, C and Cousens, SN. , (2015) Neonatal cause-of-death estimates for the early and late neonatal periods for 194 countries: 2000–2013