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Provincial Newspapers Telegraph

Four maternal deaths recorded

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CHINHOYI – THE Ministry of Health and Child Care has recorded four recent
maternal deaths in Mashonaland West province.

The statistics were presented at the Mashonaland West combined third quarter
family planning (FP) and Adolescence Reproductive Sexual Health (ASRH) meeting
held in Chinhoyi recently.

The deaths were of expectant mothers who are below 24 years of age. A single case
was recorded in Hurungwe, two cases in Makonde and one in Zvimba District.
Mashonaland West Provincial Nursing Officer, Farai Marufu, said women should
book pregnancy early before 16 weeks.

Most women are getting pregnant before the age of marriage which is 18 years the
same province also recorded pregnancy statistics of girls who are 16 years and
below. The statistics record that Chegutu District had 30 pregnant girls, Zvimba 27,
Hurungwe 83 and Makonde 43.

Mashonaland West Province has high prevalence of child marriages, with Hurungwe
District being on top among the six other districts namely Makonde, Sanyati, Zvimba,
Kariba, Chegutu and Mhondoro.

Before 2018- 2019 health year Zimbabwe used to record around 51 deaths per 100
000 pregnant women. The nation then experienced a decline in both direct and
indirect causes of pregnancy-related deaths.

Deaths from indirect causes declined mainly due to a reduction in HIV/AIDS related
and malaria mortality, while deaths from direct causes declined because of a
reduction in obstetric haemorrhage and pregnancy-related infections.

Ongoing interventions are expected to improve the coverage and quality of maternal
care further reducing deaths from direct causes.

Reducing maternal mortality is a priority of Sustainable Development Goal 3.1, which
requires frequent epidemiological analysis of trends and patterns of the causes of
maternal deaths.

The provincial family planning forum, has membership comprising organisations
working in the field of family planning in Zimbabwe and active in province. It is a
platform that is designed to discuss key family planning issues and lessons learnt for
improved health service provision.

The major challenge, which was noted at the forum, was unavailability of statistics
from the private health institutions.

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