Maternal mortality increased in Latin America before covid. What is the reason? – The Sun of Mexico

The maternal mortality It is an indicator that reflects the quality of care received by women of reproductive agehighlights the disparities caused by the unequal distribution of income, as well as, the institutional capacities and shortcomings of governments to address preventable deaths.

Read more about our weekly #FinD supplement dedicated to maternal mortality

According to the Pan American Health Organization, In Latin America and the Caribbean, maternal mortality increased between 2016 and 2020 by 15 percent. In the case of Mexico – according to the Ministry of Health – due to the pandemic, during 2020 and 2021 there was a very significant increase in the number of maternal deaths at the national level, 959 and 1,045, respectively.

However, in 2022 there was a reduction to pre-pandemic levels, with 644 maternal deaths. A trend that continued in 2023, where 556 maternal deaths were recorded.

Although the maternal mortality has maintained a downward trend in recent decades, it is clear that public policies have not been enough.

Mexico could not achieve the objective set out in the Millennium Development Goals for 2015, in which it committed to reduce maternal mortality by three quarters, which should have reached 22 deaths per 100 thousand estimated births (RMM). At the end of 2023, -eight years later- we still have not reached the proposed objective, since in that year it was 26.5 (RMM).

The situation of indigenous women is particularly alarming, as they face multiple challenges in accessing quality and timely health services.

One of the main barriers to achieving sustained progress in reduction in maternal mortality It is the notable heterogeneity that characterizes the country. This translates into significant gaps between the different federal entities, with notable progress in some and stagnation in others.

In a comparison of the MMR between what happened in 2002 with respect to 2022, it is observed that, although the reduction is practically generalized, heterogeneity is confirmed. States such as Morelos, Baja California Sur and Campeche had decreases of around three quarters in maternal mortality while, in Durango, Baja California and Nuevo León there was even an increase.

Access to the Health services constitutes one of the main barriers to the well-being of women. In the states, a high percentage of pregnant women They lack timely access to public health services, which puts both their own health and that of their sons and daughters at risk. This problem takes on an even more worrying dimension in vulnerable groups, such as the indigenous women.

The situation of the indigenous women is particularly alarming as they face multiple challenges in accessing quality and timely health services. Linguistic, cultural, and geographic barriers contribute to these women having limited access to health care during pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum.

The effectiveness of the response to address maternal mortality depends directly on the prioritization that federal and state governments give to pregnancy care.

Although significant progress has been made in our country, both federal and state governments in recent years have not maintained consistent attention to addressing the problem and accelerating progress.

At the state level, we see improvements when the incumbent government prioritizes maternal health care, but we also face serious setbacks when the next administration does not continue this priority, resulting in a lack of momentum for effective strategies.

In the field of health, the most effective measures are known to combat maternal mortality: improve primary care systems, train health personnel, increase the supply of medical products, expand capacities to attend to obstetric emergencies, promote prenatal controls, as well as community support networks for pregnant women and newborns , are just some of them.

The effectiveness of the response to address the maternal mortality It depends directly on the prioritization that federal and state governments give to pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum care, as well as the implementation of public policies supported by evidence and maintained over time.

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Only through this approach can sustained and widespread progress be made in reducing poverty. maternal mortality in the country

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