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Maternal deaths rise in Lagos

By SOLA OGUNDIPE & CHIOMA OBINNA

IKEJA- Despite efforts by the Lagos State Government to ensure that women do not die or suffer long-term disabilities as a result of pregnancy-related causes, a new report on Maternal Mortality Ratio, MMR, conducted in the 20 local government areas of the state has indicated that the rate of maternal death in the state remains unacceptably high with 555 per 100,000 live births.

The study, carried out by the Campaign Against Unwanted Pregnancy, CAUP, in collaboration with the Lagos State Ministry of Health, revealed that Alimosho Local Government Area has the highest maternal mortality ratio with 826 per 100,000 live births while Lagos Island Local Government Area has the lowest ratio of 310 per 100,000 live births.

Alimosho tops
The findings confirmed that the rate of maternal death in Alimosho Local Government Area is extremely high and far exceeds the national average, closely followed by Epe Local Government Area with 803 per 100,000 live births.

Presenting the report in Lagos, weekend, on behalf of CAUP Executive Director, Professor Boniface Oye-Adeniran, spokesperson of CAUP, Dr. Abidoye Gbadegesin, declared that maternal mortality remains unacceptably high in Lagos.

Gbadegesin, who advocated the introduction of more family planning and contraceptive services in the state, pointed out that there should be compulsory registration of maternal deaths and child births in the state.

He identified the fact that because women were “always poor, always pregnant and always powerless”, it was one major reason why Nigeria’s MMR can never come down.

Reacting, state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Jide Idris, stated that latest study was another challenge to the state to do more in terms of improving or redesigning another strategy towards reducing MMR to the barest minimum.

Idris, who affirmed that the state was not embarrassed by the high maternal mortality ratio said by 2015, the state should have reduced MMR by two-thirds.


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