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January 22nd, 2009
01:22 PM ET

When pregnancy ends in heartbreak

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/HEALTH/conditions/10/14/world.health.report/art.world.health.afp.gi.jpg]

Ann M. Veneman
Special to CNN

Every day in the United States, thousands of women and families experience one of the most joyous occasions in their lifetime - the birth of a child.

That joy is certainly not as often the case in many parts of the world. Women in the least-developed countries are 300 times more likely to die in childbirth or from complications related to pregnancy than women in developed countries.

Half a million women die due to pregnancy or childbirth complications every year.

The lack of the most basic necessities such as a doctor, nurse, clean water, supplies or even a medical facility is robbing precious innocence and devastating families.

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Filed under: Global 360°
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Teresa, OH

    It seems the harder people try to understand and help.... the further behind we all get.

    It makes me wonder about the Sierra Leone stats: with the child mortality rate so high, how does the population continue to survive? Is the population going down in correlation with the death stats?

    January 22, 2009 at 7:12 pm |
  2. Heather

    This is so sad.

    January 22, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  3. Maureen From Apple Valley, California

    This is just horrible. What can American do to help? The birth of a child should be a blessing to a family with little to no concerns. I've never had a child and if I would become pregnant one day, I'm one of the women someone would say would be a high risk pregnancy. It scares me that women still die in childbirth. There should be something someone can do to help to prevent this from ever happening.

    January 22, 2009 at 2:06 pm |