UN Maternal Health Initiative Gains Support of 16 Countries

A mother holds an infant in her arms. Sixteen countries have pledged concrete steps to reduce maternal, newborn and child mortality, according to the United Nations. Photo by: Nancy Palus / IRIN

Sixteen countries have pledged concrete steps that seek to drastically reduce maternal, newborn and child mortality, the United Nations said May 19.

The commitments are largely in the form of increased budget allocations for maternity and natal care, as well as medical coverage for maternal and child health.

Burundi, Chad, the Central African Republic, Comoros, Guinea, Kyrgyzstan, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Madagascar, Mongolia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Tajikistan, Togo and Vietnam are the newest countries to commit to the initiative, bringing to 34 the total number of nations that have made such pledges.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the new commitments, adding this will boost the global agency’s programs on tackling women and children’s health issues.

“Political and financial support for action on women’s and children’s health is reaching new and encouraging heights,’’ he said, according U.N. News Center.

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About the author

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    Louie-An Pilapil

    Louie-An is a former senior development analyst at Devex Manila. She has held consulting and editorial positions at the Asian Development Bank in Manila and a business-to-business media company in Hong Kong and mainland China.