The report said over 3,000 lives are lost to stillbirth a day across the world, most of which are preventable.
Pakistan ranked first while Chad ranked third. Two-thirds of last year’s 2.6 million stillbirths were in Africa.
Half of stillbirths happen during labour as a result of preventable conditions, notably syphilis and malaria, the report added. The studies argue stillbirths are preventable through high-quality antenatal care.
The studies said there is a widespread belief that stillbirths are due to birth defects and are unavoidable. However, it pointed out that this only accounts for 7.3% of stillbirths after 28 weeks. A notable exception is Rwanda, which the studies point out was able to reduce the number of stillbirths.
The countries with the highest stillbirth rates in 2015 and those with the largest numbers. Blue circles are proportionate to the number of stillbirths.
Stillbirth in Numbers:
An estimated 2.6 million stillbirths occur annually
- 98% occur in low-income and middle-income countries
- 75% are in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia
- More than half occur in conflict or emergency zones
- Half of all stillbirths (1.3 million) occur during labour and birth
- In sub-Saharan Africa, two-thirds of stillbirths are in rural areas
- More than 40 million women give birth unattended at home each year
At present rates of progress, it will be 160 years until a woman in Africa will have the same chance of her baby being born alive as a woman in a high-income country
Source: The LancetFollow us on Twitter at @Riverinenews
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