The Challenge

B!RTH provokes debate around the vital issue of global maternal health inequality.

Each year, an estimated 303,000 women around the world die because of pregnancy-related causes. On average, this is almost 830 every day. In addition, 2.6 million babies are stillborn each year and a further 2.8 million babies die in their first month of life. 99% of these deaths occur in low and middle income countries, and most could be prevented or avoided through actions that are proven to be effective and affordable.

These figures reflect the inequality in the access to, availability and quality of healthcare for women during and after pregnancy around the world.

Global maternal and newborn health targets have expanded from a focus on preventing death, to the importance of health and well-being. There is need for renewed emphasis and action, to ensure that all women have the right to, and are able to obtain, the highest attainable standard of health and well-being including physical, mental and social aspects of health. The aim is to ensure that every woman in every setting has an equal chance to survive and thrive during and after pregnancy.

B!RTH aims to provoke debate within a range of contexts from policy makers to community groups.