Skip to main content

Gujarat's 41 per cent maternal deaths occur below the age of 25: Report

By Our Representative
A recent report prepared by Jan Swasthya Abhiyan, involving several NGOs working on health issues in Gujarat, and high-profile CommonHealth, has found that 41 per cent of the maternal deaths in Gujarat occur in very young women, below the age of 25 years. Basing its analysis of 46 maternal deaths, it said, seven of them took place when the mother was between 16 and 20 years, and 12 deaths were of women between 20 and 25 years.
Finalised in December 2014, and titled “Social Autopsies of Maternal Deaths in Select Areas of Gujarat”, the report states, “For many of the women, this was either the first (14/46) or the second pregnancy (13/46).” It added, “Eleven of the 46 women had between four and eight pregnancies.”
The report says, “More than half – 59%, i.e. 27 of the 46 deaths -- were of scheduled caste (SC) and scheduled tribe (ST) women. This is a higher proportion than the state’s SC-ST population of around 22% (2011 Census).”
Pointing towards social indicators of these women, the report says, “Almost half of the women, who died – 46% -- were illiterate in comparison to 37% female illiteracy in Gujarat, and majority of the rest, almost one third of the total, were educated only up to primary level. Only 8 of the 46 women who died had secondary, graduate and vocational education.”
Most of the women who died had multiple occupations/responsibilities, the report says, “In addition to domestic work, 25 of them were involved in either agricultural work or/and wage labour. Nine of the women who died migrated for longer than 2-3 months without safety of home and other basic amenities or any social security.”
What the report particularly found shocking was, three of the women who died were extension workers of the Gujarat government – a teacher, a midday meal in charge, and an Asha health worker. One was Life Insurance Corporation agent.
Profiling death, the report says, “14 women (30%) died in the ante natal period, four (8.7%) during the childbirth and 28 (60.8%) after delivery. Amongst the post natal deaths, eight occurred within 24 hours, three within a week of the delivery and the rest (17) between 8 to 42 days of delivery.”
Lack of health facilities appeared to a major reason, indicates the report. “Fourteen maternal deaths – (30 %) - took place at home, 24 (52%) in institutions (10 in private and 14 in public institutions); eight deaths (17%) took place in transit”, it says.
“Among the indirect causes unrelated to pregnancy, anaemia in 4 (8.6%%) was the commonest followed by 2 deaths each due to jaundice, sickle cell disease and cardiovascular disease and one each due to malaria, tuberculosis, rabies, renal failure and dengue”, the report says.
The report says that the very fact that eight deaths happened during transit “points to the fact that although 108 has helped to increase access to health services for many women, many especially vulnerable women in remote areas continue to be plagued by lack of physical access and transport facilities.”

Comments

TRENDING

Communal rhetoric? Hindutva preached by RSS-BJP is 'monolithic', not Hinduism

By Prem Verma*  I am a devout Hindu but not a believer of RSS Hindutva form of Hinduism which brings about hatred of other religions. My Hindu religion has not taught me to look down on other religions and neither has it instilled in me to go about converting others to my religion because my religion is superior.

India sees 62 journo deaths, 4th highest, amidst pandemic: Swiss media rights body

By Our Representative The Switzerland-based media rights body Press Emblem Campaign (PEC) has noted that India is the fourth most affected country as far as mediapersons’ death on account of Covid-19 is concerned. According to Blaise Lempen, secretary-general of PEC, the global tally of casualties among media persons in the Covid-19 pandemic has reached 1,036 journalists in 73 countries till date.

Gross 'injustice' to children: Rs 5000 cr cut in education budget; 15 lakh schools shut down

Counterview Desk  More than 100 dignitaries, including educationists, academia, social activists, teachers’ union, civil society organisations (CSOs), various networks and people working on child rights, in a letter to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman have sought reversal of reduction in allocation for education in the Union Budget 2021-22, even as demanding substantial increase in it.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

RSS love for 'killer' Myanmar junta behind Indian military presence at Tatmadaw Day?

By Shamsul Islam*  If a shameful act means an action which is criminal and nauseating, it would be an understatement to describe the attitude of the present RSS-BJP rulers of India towards the demolition of democracy and large-scale killing of the people of Myanmar by the military ( tatmadaw ) junta which took power through a coup on February 1, 2021 after renegading the election results in which the party of Aung San Suu Kyi, National League for Democracy, was a clear winner.

Chhattisgarh’s Apra riverfront imitates Sabarmati: 'Devaluing' water, environment

Sabarmati riverfront By Mansee Bal Bhargava*  This year’s #WorldWaterDay (March 22) focus was on ‘Valuing Water’. My school friend, Pragati Tiwari from Bilaspur, Chhattisgarh, called that day knowing my interest in water matters. We were remembering our childhood days as how we used to play on the banks and the bed of the Arpa Nadi (River) during the summer holidays and as how the river would swell like Anaconda to flow happily during the monsoon.

Bihar massacre on Holi day: Brahminical, casteist mindset behind 'uneasy' silence

Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  Several people were killed in Bihar amidst Holi festivities, but not much response has come in from the media. The silence of the government and the society as a whole is also appalling. We seek to romanticise these festivals, yet we forget that every year they take so many lives. This despite the fact that Holi appears to be the best time for 'avenging things'.

India's draft migrants policy: Whither concern on job restrictions imposed by states?

By Anil Kumar*  India’s Niti Aayog has prepared a Draft Migration Policy. The draft policy acknowledges migration as an integral part of development, and it calls for positive government interventions that facilitate internal migration. With a rights-based solution to migration, the draft states that the policy should “enhance the agency and capability of the community and thereby remove aspects that come in the way of an individual’s own natural ability to thrive”.

Recalling Jallianwala martyrs' communal amity as BJP 'warns' of Sitalkuchi everywhere

By Shamsul Islam*  The RSS-BJP rulers declare India to be a battle-ground between Hinduism and Islam. Muslims have been declared as ‘internal threat’ by RSS ideologue MS Golwalkar (“Bunch of Thought”, Chapter xvi). Behaviour of many of their leading cadres, including those who hold high constitutional posts, is such that they seem to be conspiring over-time to ignite a civil war between the two communities. They are under the impression that this would help divert attention from failures of the Hindutva rulers on developmental front.