Midwife Conference Held to Improve Maternal Health in Africa
In Ghana, approximately 70 midwifery leaders met to participate in a workshop focusing on improving access to midwife services throughout the African continent. The workshop is organized by the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and will last for five days. Throughout the workshop, the leaders will work to develop plans to promote midwife education. According to UNFPA, approximately 358,000 women die annually from
preventable complications in pregnancy and childbirth, and 90 percent of these deaths occur in developing nations.
ICM President Frances Day-Stirk stated, "Evidence shows that access to competent, educated midwives and high-quality midwifery services significantly reduces the number of women and babies who die in pregnancy and childbirth. As a result of ICM's work, midwives now have global standards against which countries can assess their competencies, education and regulation of their workforce and save lives."
In September, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the World Bank released a report stating that although maternal mortality rates have decreased by 34 percent since 1990, the decline in the rate of pregnancy-related deaths is not on track to meet the Millennium Development Goal target for 2015. Currently, there are approximately 1,000 maternal deaths per day caused by easily preventable conditions that include severe bleeding after childbirth, infections, hypertensive disorders, and unsafe abortion.
Media Resources: UNFPA 8/25/11; Feminist Daily Newswire 6/21/11
3/25/2015 Afghan Woman Beaten to Death for Burning Koran - A 27-year-old woman who reportedly burned a copy of the Koran inside of a riverside shrine in Kabul, Afghanistan was brutally beaten and burned alive on Thursday.
Shocking videos quickly spread on social media showing crowds of men surrounded by hundreds of onlookers assaulting the 27-year-old Farkhunda with bricks and sticks and repeatedly kicking her. . . .
3/25/2015 Masked Intruder Attacks Last Abortion Clinic Standing in Mississippi - In the early hours of the morning Monday, a person in a mask wielding what appeared to be a machete attacked the Jackson Women's Health Organization, the last remaining abortion clinic in the state of Mississippi.
The clinic revealed in a post on their website the details of the attack on what is affectionately referred to by staff and community members as The Pink House. . . .
3/17/2015 Vice President Biden Pledges 41 Million to Clear Rape Kit Backlog - Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Mikulski (D-MD) spoke yesterday at a Maryland State Police Laboratory to declare their support for a $41 million budget proposal to combat the national backlog of rape kits.
"Testing rape kits should be an absolute priority for the United States of America," Vice President Biden said, referring to the estimated 400,000 untested rape kits nationwide. . . .