Maternal Health

Call the Midwife! Citizens Demand the Right to Safe Births for Every Woman, Everywhere

Laura Robson | Posted 20.05.2015 | UK
Laura Robson

As civil society groups advocate for progress on maternal and child health at the World Health Assembly this week, recent experiences in Madagascar demonstrate how community mobilisation can bring about positive change.

An Ideal Pregnancy

Louise Parry | Posted 05.05.2015 | UK Parents
Louise Parry

My idea of what my pregnancy would be like in no way matched up with the reality of extreme morning sickness, SPD and an inability to cope with life in general. Being pregnant didn't help me to work through my issues, it magnified them to the extent that most days I struggled to get out of bed.

Community Lies at the Heart of Comic Relief's Operation Health

Ilya Jones | Posted 08.05.2015 | UK
Ilya Jones

Comic Relief's Operation Health project, the focus of this year's Red Nose Day campaign, will completely renovate a dilapidated health centre in Iyolwa, Uganda. Operation Health is at the centre of a fundraising drive to improve healthcare across Africa by showing how money well spent can be used to improve health systems.

Imprisoned in Hospital - The Story of Folake Oduyoye

Toyin Ojora-Saraki | Posted 07.04.2015 | UK
Toyin Ojora-Saraki

For over 10 years, WBFA and I have intervened to assist with medical bills through our various community programmes like the TMB and IMedF. However, this model is ultimately unsustainable.

Living as an Empty-Armed Mother After Surviving HELLP Syndrome

Leigh Kendall | Posted 17.03.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Leigh Kendall

Left untreated, both conditions are likely to result in the deaths of both mum and baby. The only cure is for the baby to be born. My partner and I were both utterly devastated - we knew the chances of our baby's survival at that stage were slim.

South Sudan Has One of the Highest Maternal Mortality Rates - Yet With the Proper Investment and Resources, We Can Make Safe Births a Reality

Aimee Ansari | Posted 16.02.2015 | UK
Aimee Ansari

I've heard stories like the one I am going to tell four times already. I'm not sure I can stand to hear it again. It's terrible - doubly so because the tragedy could have been prevented. The problem has been exacerbated by the conflict in South Sudan, but its roots go back many decades.

Breakthrough Research on Maternal Prenatal Stress Astounds Scientific Community

Priyam Sharma | Posted 08.02.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Priyam Sharma

As many readers might already know, exposing pregnant women to stress at constantly high levels can be detrimental to foetal development, placing the newborn at an extreme disadvantage emotionally and intellectually.

Is GDP Cheating West Africa?

Claudia Delpero | Posted 22.11.2014 | UK
Claudia Delpero

The spectacular GDP growth recorded by some West African countries in the past 5 years is all of a sudden undermined by the spread of the Ebola virus. The epidemic has put under the spotlight the poor conditions of health systems in the region, but also the fragility of economic models measured only by Gross Domestic Product.

The Reality of Unsafe Abortion

Michelle Weinberger | Posted 28.10.2014 | UK Lifestyle
Michelle Weinberger

Disability, infertility, being shunned by your community and in the worst case even death: these are just some of the terrifying risks women expose themselves to when they have an unsafe abortion. Yet every year 21.6 million women, 99% of them in the developing world, are so desperate to end an unwanted pregnancy that they will quite literally risk their lives.

Goodbye Life, Hello Child: Why It Took Me Time to Love My Son

Caroline Keetch | Posted 24.09.2014 | UK Lifestyle
Caroline Keetch

This loss of everything I took for granted in my adult life was much more overwhelming to me than the love I felt for my baby. I know, I said it, shoot me world - and what a world we live in when it comes to 'views' on mothers. How we should feel, how we should look, how we should react... the expectations are real and they are fired at a new mother like arrows from a bow.

Midwifery Training Video Launched to Save Babies Lives

Heidi Eldridge | Posted 27.06.2014 | UK Universities & Education
Heidi Eldridge

The UK has one of the worst stillbirth rates in the developed world and at least 1 third of stillbirths are related to fetal growth restriction. At least 10% of all babies born are growth restricted.

More Action Needed on Reproductive Rights for All

Lynne Featherstone | Posted 07.06.2014 | UK Politics
Lynne Featherstone

Fewer women are dying in child birth, more girls are going to school, increased numbers of women are taking on roles in public office, there are more female entrepreneurs and less poverty. But significant challenges remain, and we are still a long way from achieving universal access to reproductive and sexual health and the realisation of reproductive rights for all.

Join Our Call to Make Women Matter

Claire Morris | Posted 05.05.2014 | UK
Claire Morris

Women around the world are still facing some of the worst discrimination imaginable. From child marriage to female genital mutilation and inexcusably high rates of maternal mortality, the list goes on. As we approach International Women's Day, it doesn't seem like there is much to celebrate.

No Laughing Matter; Lunch With Desmond Tutu

Brigid McConville | Posted 12.02.2014 | UK
Brigid McConville

With the recent loss of Nelson Mandela, South African found its voice - and during the memorial service, its silence - in Desmond Tutu. He was Mandela's ally through so many decades of struggle. He remains a hugely respected scourge of the world's wrongs, and irrepressible champion of the oppressed.

Money Spent on Medical Negligence Claims Could Be Reduced but the Right to Bring a Claim Must Remain

Caroline Klage | Posted 25.01.2014 | UK
Caroline Klage

Reports about the amount of money being spent by the NHS on medical negligence claims highlight the urgent need for deep-rooted changes in the way services are delivered and the way claims are handled...

Disability: Emerging From the Shadows?

Dominic Haslam | Posted 23.01.2014 | UK
Dominic Haslam

Five years' on, maternal health is a UK Government priority, has massive investment, and we are seeing a huge reduction in the number of women and children dying in childbirth globally. Choose the right issue at the right time, and a Parliamentary inquiry really can change the debate - and more importantly, change lives.

Is It Actually That Safe to Have a Baby on the NHS?

Ed Fletcher | Posted 23.01.2014 | UK
Ed Fletcher

When a mother-to-be presents to a maternity ward preparing for the birth of her child, she is admitted to the care of healthcare professionals and should be able to feel confident in their support. By reflecting on those occasions when services have failed, we can devise actionable improvements to better outcomes for patients and staff, and ensure our hospitals are safe.

Education Transforms

Pauline Rose | Posted 18.11.2013 | UK Politics
Pauline Rose

People around the world know that education is the key to a better life. Voters from over 190 countries who responded to the United Nations My World survey said providing a good education for all was the best way to build a better world. There's a huge gap between that goal and reality, however: 250million children are still being denied a chance to learn the basics.

No Mother Left Behind - What the Millenium Development Goals Mean for the Mothers of the Central African Republic

Laura Jepson | Posted 17.11.2013 | UK
Laura Jepson

This week marks 100 days since the report of the high level panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. As eminent persons and development academics once again turn their thoughts to what will replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), it's worth remembering what these debates really mean for mothers and babies in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Mothers and Babies: Maternal and Paediatric Healthcare Around the World

Rosalyn Smith | Posted 30.10.2013 | UK Lifestyle
Rosalyn Smith

The birth of the Royal baby, Prince George of Cambridge, was a time to celebrate for most of the British public. Unmarred by worries of a traumatic birth in volatile conditions in a country where we are lucky enough to have free access to healthcare. But others are not so lucky. Every day, around 1,000 women die in childbirth or from a pregnancy-related complication.

Progress for Family Planning but 16Million Adolescent Pregnancies Left Behind

Professor Joy Lawn | Posted 10.07.2013 | UK
Professor Joy Lawn

There are more adolescent pregnancies than ever before: 16million girls under the age of 18 give birth each year, 95% of which are in low and middle income countries. One in three girls in these countries will be pregnant by their 20th birthday, and many are unplanned.

Maternity Ward Sales Reps, Ultrasound Parties and 3D Models of Your Foetus - Welcome to the Commercial Face of Childbirth

Zoe Armstrong | Posted 03.09.2013 | UK Lifestyle
Zoe Armstrong

Off my face on painkillers and hormones after an emergency c. section and haemorrhage, I was repeatedly pressured by a sales rep to buy baby photographs. She kept returning to see if I'd 'made a decision'; I could barely decide which way up my baby was supposed to be. Of course this should be banned. It's borderline barbarism and places commercial factors above maternal wellbeing.

Human Rights in Childbirth - From Niche Cause to a Global Movement

Toni Harman | Posted 24.08.2013 | UK Lifestyle
Toni Harman

Over the past year, I've become a champion of a niche cause. Few people have heard of it. But it's a cause that directly affects the health and well-being of millions of women around the world. That cause is human rights in childbirth.

Postnatal Cravings in Singapore

Priyam Sharma | Posted 17.06.2013 | UK Lifestyle
Priyam Sharma

Exhausted, time-poor new mothers relish the beautifully packaged bundles of nutritious goodness carefully crafted by clinical experts, together with advice from their Chinese Physician at Thomson Chinese Medicine. The 28-day menu is catered to mothers who have more discerning palates, whilst maintaining the nutritional aspects of the herbs used in preparing the meals.

'Sorry, We're Full,' Hospitals Tell Pregnant Women

The Huffington Post UK | Posted 16.06.2013 | UK

Thousands of expectant mothers are being turned away from maternity wards due to staff shortages and a lack of available beds, it was reported. Fig...