The maternal mortality ratio is unacceptably high in Africa. Forty per cent of all pregnancy-related deaths worldwide occur in Africa. On average, over 7 women die per 1,000 live births. About 22,000 African women die each year from unsafe abortion, reflecting a high unmet need for contraception. Contraceptive use among women in union varies from 50 per cent in the southern sub-region to less than 10 per cent in middle and western Africa" UNFPA

Early and unwanted childbearing, HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), and pregnancy-related illnesses and deaths account for a significant proportion of the burden of illness experienced by women in Africa. Gender-based violence is an influential factor negatively impacting on the sexual and reproductive health of one in every three women. Many are unable to control decisions to have sex or to negotiate safer sexual practices, placing them at great risk of disease and health complications.

According to UNAIDS, there is an estimated of 22.2 million people living with HIV in Sub-Saharan African in 2009, which represents 68% of the global HIV burden. Women are at higher risk than men to be infected by HIV, their vulnerability remains particulary high in the Sub-Saharan Africa and 76% of all HIV women in the world live in this region.

In almost all countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa region, the majority of people living with HIV are women, especially girls and women aged between 15-24. Not only are women more likely to become infected, they are more severely affected. Their income is likely to fall if an adult man loses his job and dies. Since formal support to women are very limited, they may have to give up some income-genrating activities or sacrifice school to take care of the sick relatives.

For more information on HIV/AIDS and Reproductive health, please visit the following websites:

Source: We Informers
Children living with HIV/Aids have petitioned the minister of health Dr. Christine Ondoa to give priority to prevention of HIV transmission from mother to child.

Source: Nairobi Star
Every year, tens of thousands of women and girls in Africa suffer from Obstetric Fistula, a preventable childbirth injury that results in uncontrollable flow of urine and/or faeces.

Source: All Africa

Madam Salamatu Ibrahim, Nkoranza South District Director of Health Services, has called on husbands to ensure medical care for their pregnant spouses.

Source: All Africa

At least 254 former Sabiny female genital surgeons in three districts of Kapchorwa, Kween and Bukwo have received grinding machines to start up a new way of life other than depending on mutilating women.

Source: UN News Centre
Up to 3.6 million deaths could be avoided each year in 58 developing countries if midwifery services are upgraded, according to a report released today by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and partners.

Source: UN News Centre
The United Nations is set to unveil a report highlighting the vital work of midwives in ensuring that millions of women and newborn children do not die needlessly at a time when many countries still lack enough skilled staff to serve as birth attendants.

Source: Open Democracy
In the words of the African parable, when elephants fight, it's the grass that suffers. Then what will they have to survive on? Alice Welbourn reports on the plethora of men on the platform in New York....

Source: All Africa
With a few weeks left, I am glad to have a few things sorted. Baby's name was becoming an issue with the husband seemingly blank on any suggestions and yet adamant about my recommendations.

Source: Plus News
Local understanding of children's immune systems may be delaying access to paediatric HIV treatment, according to a study at a rural clinic in northern Malawi, where just 15 percent of children in need of antiretrovirals (ARVs) are receiving the drugs.

Source: Al Jazeera
Bill Gates, Britain and other nations commit funds to help treat preventable diseases among world's poorest children.

Source: Plus News
The United Nations High-Level Meeting on AIDS was nothing if not bold. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for a global commitment to eliminate AIDS by 2020. "That is our goal – zero new infections, zero stigma and zero AIDS-related deaths," Ban said to a round of applause at the UN General Assembly last week in New York.

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