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New commitments to save women and children
Date:5/19/2011

GENEVA, 19 May 2011: Today 16 countries announced new commitments to dramatically reduce maternal, newborn and child mortality, as part of the Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health.

"Political and financial support for action on women's and children's health is reaching new and encouraging heights. The commitments build on the momentum of recent months, and prove that saving the lives of the most vulnerable can attract support at the highest levels," says Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations Secretary-General, who is leading the Every Woman Every Child campaign to accelerate progress on Millennium Development Goals 4 (child mortality) and 5 (maternal health).

"The commitments by countries today demonstrate that we are on the verge of a tipping point," says Dr Babatunde Osotimehin, the Executive Director of UNFPA. "Countries in different regions and situations are stepping forward as the Global Strategy catches fire."

New country commitments

New commitments were announced by Burundi, Chad, the Central African Republic, Comoros, Guinea, Kyrgyzstan, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Madagascar, Mongolia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Tajikistan, Togo, and Viet Nam.

Every year, 358,000 women in the developing world aged 15-49 die of pregnancy and childbirth-related complications. Every year, 2.6 million children are stillborn, and a further 8.1 million die before their fifth birthday, including 3.3 million babies in the first month of life.

"'The Global Strategy is an unprecedented opportunity to help the women and children who need it most. The commitments made by Members States, donors and other partners are an impressive signal that we collectively take responsibility to achieve the health-related Millennium Development Goals and save more women's and children's lives," says World Health Organization Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan.

"Focusing on the wo
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Contact: Marshall Hoffman
marshall@hoffmanpr.com
703-533-3535
Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health
Source:Eurekalert

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