HC Deb 08 July 2003 vol 408 c689W
Ms Christine Russell

To ask the Minister of State, Department for International Development what assessment his Department has made in conjunction with the World Health Organisation to determine the most successful and cost-effective safe motherhood package for the developing world. [123553]

Hilary Benn

DFID, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and others agree that the most effective strategy to reduce maternal mortality is to ensure that all women are attended at birth by a skilled attendant backed by timely access to emergency obstetric care in the event of a life threatening complication. There is consensus on the content of antenatal, natal and post natal care `packages' and these are considered cost-effective. The global failure to address the high burden of maternal mortality in developing countries does not reflect a lack of available cost-effective interventions but rather the lack of sustained political commitment to act on the scale necessary.

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