But moving the needle much further requires greater political will and more money, says Anneka Knutsson, chief of sexual and reproductive health at the UN population fund UNFPA. About two-thirds of all maternal deaths take place in sub-Saharan Africa. These appointments are crucial in identifying problems or underlying issues that could cause difficulties in childbirth — if a woman has malaria, for instance, or needs special support because she is HIV-positive. Eighteen of the 20 countries with the highest rates of child marriage are found in Africa, the continent with the highest rates of maternal mortality. It requires more long-term and complex investments in the health system. Facebook Twitter Pinterest. In fact, it was the target that made the slowest progress.
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