World Health Day - Support Safe Motherhood

MMWR (March 27, 1998)

April 7, 1998 is World Health Day. The theme is "Invest in the Future: Support Safe Motherhood."

The Centers for Disease Control justifies this theme in part by saying "Although the risk for women dying from pregnancy has decreased substantially during the past 50 years...approximately 50 percent of pregnancy-related deaths remain preventable."

How do they know that half of all pregnancy deaths are preventable? Easy.

There's a study titled "Pregnancy-related Mortality in New Jersey, 1975 to 1989" [Am J Public Health 1992;82:1085-8].

But since when does one study establish a fact? Is New Jersey really representative of the U.S.? What's so special about the period 1975 to 1989? That's three problems and I haven't even looked up the study yet.

And there's more.

The CDC states "Safe motherhood continues with planned pregnancies..." So will the Pregnancy Police be coming after my mother? (I was unplanned, after all!) And how far are we from the CDC saying "Safe motherhood continues with Government-licensed pregnancies..."?

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