Maternal mortality rate increases sharply in N. Korea


*View the UN report here

The number of North Korean women who have died while giving birth rose drastically in 2005 from five years earlier due to worsening health care conditions in the impoverished communist state, a report said Monday.

Maternal mortality rose to 370 per 100,000 births in 2005 from 67 in 2000, according to the report issued jointly by the United Nations Population Fund, UNICEF, the World Health Organization and the World Bank.

Although the rate is lower than the global average of 400 deaths per 100,000, it is 26 times higher than that of South Korea with the rate of 14 deaths per 100,000.

Sub-Saharan African countries have the highest maternal mortality rate of 900 per 100,000, followed by Southeast Asia’s 450 and East Mediterranean countries’ 420.

The comparable figures for the United States, the Western Pacific Ocean and Europe are 99, 82 and 27 respectively.

Blurb from report:

The MMR estimate for 2005 (370) was higher than the 2000 MMR (67). The predicted PMDF in 2005 was higher than in 2000, because the GDP estimate (in purchasing power parity) used in the 2005 model was approximately 75% lower than the estimate of US$ 14 996 used in the 2000 model.


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