“Maternal health isn’t just a medical issue, it’s a societal barometer.”

 Every two minutes, a woman loses her life to preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. These staggering statistics stress the need for action. In humanitarian crises, where access to healthcare is severely limited, maternal care becomes even more critical.  

“800 preventable maternal mortalities are happening every day, and a woman dies every two minutes from a preventable cause. So that’s women dying through pregnancy and pregnancy related conditions,” shared Dr Pippa Letchworth, our Faculty Lead for Obstetrics and Gynaecology.”

This sobering reality is what drives our passionate team to develop an obstetrics and gynaecology course aimed at addressing the most pressing challenges in maternal healthcare. In crisis settings, where resources are scarce, the course equips healthcare professionals with the skills needed to perform life-saving surgeries, particularly focusing on addressing the top global killers of women – haemorrhage, obstructed labour, sepsis, and unsafe abortion. 

“75% of displaced people are women and children, and one of the five of those women will be pregnant.”

The course covers a wide spectrum of topics in maternal and neonatal healthcare in crisis. Participants begin with trauma training before transitioning into obstetrics to understand the complexities of childbirth emergencies.  

Emphasis is placed on neonatal resuscitation techniques with the goal of reducing the number of stillbirths. Subsequent sessions address postpartum haemorrhage management, perineal repair, and navigating challenging deliveries like impaction and breech positions. The course also covers disruptive delivery, crucial for situations where doctors have limited access to caesarean sections.  

Beyond the medical realm, our trainers advocate for a holistic approach to maternal health in their teaching. It’s not just about reducing mortality rates, it’s about understanding the wider implications of maternal deaths on families, communities, and societies at large. Children left motherless are at a significantly higher risk of mortality and developmental issues, perpetuating a cycle of vulnerability. 

“There needs to be a call to arms to improving maternal health.”

We must advocate for women’s rights, improving doctors access to education and dismantling systemic barriers that perpetuate maternal mortality.