Yemen maternal and newborn health on the brink of total collapse UNICEF

According to UNICEF, one woman and six newborns die every two hours from complications during pregnancy or childbirth. The years of intense fighting in the country have contributed to limited access to crucial healthcare, with only three out of 10 births taking place in regular health facilities. The results are part of a series compiled by the agency, Childbirth and parenting in a war zone, released this week. Addressing the grim statistics, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore said that “bringing life into the world in Yemen, can all too often turn into a tragedy for entire families”. Yemen was already the poorest country in the Middle East and one of the world’s most impoverished even before the war between the Saudi-led Government coalition and Houthi rebels, escalated early in 2015. The maternal mortality rate has risen sharply since then, from five maternal deaths a day in 2013, to 12 a day last year. “Decades of underdevelopment and years of intense fighting have left essential public services, including crucial healthcare for mothers and babies, on the brink of total collapse”, Ms. Fore added. With mothers and babies amongst the most highly vulnerable in Yemen, one in 37 new-born babies die in the first month of life and one out of every 260 women dies in pregnancy or childbirth, according to a UNICEF press release issued on Friday. Recalling that access to quality ante- and post-natal health services is key to newborn and maternal survival, the agency warned that only 51 per cent of all health facilities are fully functional, and even these face severe shortages in medicines, equipment, and staff, putting lives at risk. Home births on the rise as services collapseAccording to accounts by women interviewed in an ongoing qualitative study on health services in Sana’a, Taiz and Aden, home births are also on the rise. Women reported that because families are getting poorer by the day, an increasing number of women are opting to have their babies at home, and only seek medical care if they experience complications. UNICEF/FuadInfants born prematurely receive treatment in Alsabeen Hospital, Sana’a, Yemen. Here, a UNICEF staff member (left) visits the hospital. Children born since the conflict escalated in Yemen face huge challenges in their physical, cognitive and social development. (2018)In a country profoundly affected by humanitarian crisis, delivery of routine primary healthcare services has also been overshadowed by the urgency of responding to the cholera epidemic and the chronic starvation threat, leaving pregnant women and newborns with limited access to a broader range of maternal and child health services.  “Antenatal care and skilled health attendance at delivery are essential to the survival of both mothers and babies,” Ms. Fore added. “As the world marks the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, we renew our call for all children – in Yemen and elsewhere – to enjoy their full rights to health, education, protection and peace.” The agency is calling on all parties to the conflict and the international community to focus resources on the poor, marginalized and internally displaced communities and to protect the health care system in the country, with specific attention to primary healthcare. read more

Mining company of the future – Development Partner Framework

first_imgThe case for evolving the mining industry has never been stronger. While demand for natural resources continues to grow, mining companies are facing complex challenges in meeting that demand while maintaining their license to operate through strengthening local communities and reducing impact on the environment. The Development Partner Framework is a bold new approach for resource companies to build sustainable, long-term value by repositioning mining companies from isolated actors to regional development partners.The KIN Catalyst: Mining Company of the Future is a cross-sector collaboration between leaders from mining companies, contractors, suppliers, researchers, academics, nonprofits and representatives from indigenous communities. The KIN Catalyst is co-chaired by Mark Cutifani, CEO of Anglo American, Peter Bryant, Partner at Clareo and Senior Fellow at the Kellogg Innovation Network and Ray Offenheiser, President of Oxfam America.In April 2012, founding members of the KIN Catalyst convened in Brazil to discuss the state of the mining industry and identify opportunities for change. The Development Partner Framework was identified as a key initiative to drive value for all stakeholders. Since April 2012, the Development Partner Working Group has convened to analyse mining in its totality and to build a framework that moves the industry towards a more effective model of sustainable development. The goal of the working group was to create a framework that can be used by all mining companies at all stages of the mining lifecycle. The resulting framework is summarized in its video working group has created a more detailed description of the Development Partner Framework. This paper sets up the background on the development of the framework, highlights current challenges and opportunities for the mining industry and makes a case for the business imperative behind a new mindset. Each pillar is detailed and enablers discussed in depth. read more