Developing Countries: Maternal Mortality

Department for International Development written question – answered on 21st October 2019.

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Photo of John Mann John Mann Chair, Treasury Sub-Committee

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment he has made of the effect of UK overseas development assistance on levels of maternal mortality in the last 10 years.

Photo of Andrew Murrison Andrew Murrison Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

The global Maternal Mortality Ratio has declined on average by 2.9% every year since 2000. More specifically, this ratio reduced from 274 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2007 to 211 in 2017.

This result is due to countries’ own investments as well as those from the entire development community, to which DFID is a major contributor. Using internationally agreed methods, we estimate that DFID has spent approximately £1 billion per year on reproductive, maternal newborn and child health between 2013/14 – 2016/17. DFID has contributed to reduced maternal mortality through our bilateral and central health programmes that focus on strengthening health systems (e.g. through health worker training, drugs and equipment). We also support the development of global and national policies. We have led the world on increasing access to family planning and remain a champion on these issues. We recently announced a renewed commitment to end preventable deaths of mothers and newborns by 2030.

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