Shabana willing to bring MPs on board for maternal mortality

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

NEW DELHI - Actor and social activist Shabana Azmi Wednesday said she is willing to take on the responsibility of getting concerned MPs on board to work on the issue of maternal mortality in India.

“MPs need an emotional trigger to commit themselves to the issue of maternal health. The fact that 60,000 to 80,000 women die in India during child birth is a matter of concern and politicians need to prioritise women health,” Azmi said at a conference organised by the NGO Chetna in the capital.

“I am willing to take the responsibility to get concerned MPs on board to flag the issue of high maternal mortality in India,” she added.

According to health experts, more women die every year during childbirth or pregnancy in India than in any other country in the world. A majority of these deaths are directly linked to obstetric complications such as haemorrhage, obstructed labour or other pregnancy-related seizures.

Aparajita Gogoi, national coordinator for Safe Motherhood Alliance, India, said the number of institutional deliveries had gone up by 10 times — thanks to the Janani Suraksha Yojana, but the quality of care was still lacking.

Experts added that if the status of women has to improve, then the age of marriage for girls is to be raised and anaemia is to be tackled for improved maternal health.

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