Leading Cause of Death for Teenage Girls Is Pregnancy and Childbirth
A leading aid group has reported that teenage girls in the developing world have a high risk of dying from pregnancy and childbirth complications. According to Save the Children, approximately 70,000 girls and 1 million infants die each year due to childbirth or related problems. Save the Children found that in developing countries, pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of death among teenage girls.
Mike Kiernan, a spokesperson for Save the Children, told the Associated Press that “The main difference between the United States and [high-risk countries in the developing world] is that far fewer [US] girls and their babies dies from complications, and that’s because of access to health care.”
The group is urging that alternatives to early marriage and motherhood “must be made available if young girls are to survive and thrive,” pointing to research that “shows that girls who receive an education are less likely to have babies at a young age.”
According to the study, the countries that have the highest risk for teenage girls include sub-Saharan Africa, Niger, Liberia, Mali, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Guatemala, Haiti, Nepal, Nicaragua, and Yemen.
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .