Though it is often a taboo topic, women are still dying in childbirth. In fact, hundreds of women around the world will die from complications experienced during pregnancy and childbirth.
Sadly, most of these deaths are preventable. And this is not just a Third World problem. The rate of maternal death from complications of pregnancy and childbirth has almost doubled in the past 20 years right here in the United States.
This means that every 10 minutes a woman in the United States dies from complications of pregnancy or childbirth. That's over 50 thousand women each year who die from trying to bring life into the world.
Since this is obviously a critical problem that seems to be getting worse, the global health care company Merck created Merck for Mothers. This initiative is a 10-year, $500 million program that is intent on creating a world where no woman has to die giving life.
This initiative is already at work in over 20 countries around the world, but now they are focusing more on women in the United States.
Merck recently announced an initial commitment of $6 million to aid U.S.-based programs focused on decreasing the number of women who die, or suffer severe injuries, due to complications from pregnancy and childbirth. The most common complications include excessive bleeding, blood clots and high blood pressure.
Merck for Mothers will work with local and national partners to improve maternal health in cities such as Baltimore, New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. They will work with partners statewide across California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Ohio, New Jersey and North Carolina.
The programs will help coordinate prenatal, postpartum, and primary care for high risk women as well as research why women are continuing to die in childbirth.
Dr. Priya Agrawal,an obstetrician and gynecologist, global woman’s health expert, and executive director for Merck for Mothers, believes that a healthy pregnancy and childbirth is important for the well-being of the mother of course.