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Posts Tagged ‘supply shortages’

International aid groups and public hospitals are struggling to keep up with births in post-earthquake Haiti. The city still lacks adequate numbers of health workers and supplies–leaving many pregnant women without access to obstetric care services.

Miami Herald

A young Haitian doctor finishes delivering 26-year-old Joanne Desir's first baby as she's being held by her husband, Patrice Zephir, in the back of a pickup truck outside the General Hospital in Port-au-Prince. PATRICK FARRELL / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

“..There are new concerns for the 63,000 pregnant women now living in Port-au-Prince. More than 7,000 are expected to give birth this month.

`People here are giving birth under the absolute worst conditions,’ said Dr. Jonathan Evans, a pediatric gastroenterologist volunteering at the University of Miami field hospital. `They can’t find access to midwives. Little problems become big problems.’

In the sprawling camp at the city center of Champs de Mars, where the fruit flies are unrelenting and the stench of human waste inescapable, Antoine Toussaint worries about the health of her unborn child.

Toussaint, 27, is nine months into her pregnancy. She lost her last baby, a son, in childbirth two years ago. This time, Toussaint will have only the help of her family if complications arise…”

Read the full story here.

For more information on the University of Miami response to the earthquake, click here.

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Guinea-Bissau: Dying for Treatment is the name of Marco Vernaschi’s reporting project on health care in Guinea-Bissau, supported by the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting

Vernaschi’s project is tracking the story of extremely  limited access to quality health care in Guinea-Bissau, with a focus on the issue of maternal mortality.

Take a look at his photo essay that uses images to expose what  life and death are like for pregnant women in Guinea-Bissau. These photos are some of the most powerful I have ever seen.

Click here to see the photo essay.

Also, take a look at this 30 minute video that outlines many of the factors that contribute to limited access and poor quality of care in Guinea-Bissau—and the human implications of these problems.


Click here to visit the website for the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.

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Brain-drain, a poorly funded public health system, professional negligence, poor communication and  supply shortages all seem to be factoring into this spike in maternal mortality

Relief Web

“Figures showing a rise in the number of women dying in childbirth have only confirmed the multiple challenges facing maternity provision in Kyrgyzstan, which is short of qualified hospital staff, medical supplies and equipment. From January to the end of August, the latest period for which national data are available, 58 deaths were recorded among mothers during pregnancy, childbirth and the post-delivery period. The figure for eight months was ten more than for the whole of 2008. The figures were announced at a national congress of Kyrgyzstan midwives, paediatricians and paediatric surgeons held in the capital Bishkek on October 29-30. As the meeting took place, investigations were continuing into the deaths of four women at Bishkek’s perinatal centre between July 1 and August 18…”

Read the full story here.

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