14 Jun 2011
Where did the maternal mortality ratio of 350 come from?
A lie told often enough becomes the truth
Recently, government officials from the Ministry of health and the population secretariat have started a remour that the maternal mortality ratio of Uganda has reduced from 435 per 100,000 live births to 350 per 100,000 live births. However, the study or survey that informs this conclusion is never cited for scholars and other stakeholders to appraise themselves with. The only conclusion that can be drawn from this remour is that the Ministry of Health is involved in wishful thinking and hoping that once they repeat this lie long enough it will become the new truth.
THE UN casts doubt
Even right now, questions are still being asked how the ministry of health arrived at the current maternal morality ratio of 435 per 100,000 live births. The 2010 MDG report for Uganda says explicitly that this figure is an underestimation. According to the MDG report of 2010, “the methodology used and the sample sizes implemented in the three surveys do not allow for precise estimates of maternal mortality. The errors that follow from the representative sample around each of the estimates are large and, consequently, the changes are not statistically significant. It is therefore not possible to say confidently that maternal mortality has declined”.
The challenge of maternal health is not helped by the poor birth and death registration system in Uganda. This is aggravated by the fact that only 30% of Ugandan women deliver in health facility.
Unless we hear a clarification from the Uganda Bureau of Statistic (UBOS), we shall take the new alleged maternal mortality ratio of Uganda of 350 per 100,000 live births for what it is: WOLOKOSO!!