Sarah Brown calls on midwives to play their part to end maternal deaths
White Ribbon Alliance campaign asks leaders for US$10 billion in new investment for maternal, newborn and child health
3 June 2008 Glasgow, Scotland -- The wife of the British Prime Minister is on a campaign…to save mothers. Addressing the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) at their Triennial Congress being held in Glasgow, Sarah Brown called on them to play their part to end the tragedy of maternal deaths. "As midwives you are on the frontline of providing maternal care, " Brown told the 3000 delegates attending the Congress. " I have personally committed to do all I can to see that governments commit specific contributions to make the goal of reducing maternal mortality by 75% a reality by 2015. I urge all of you to join me," she added.
A Patron of the White Ribbon Alliance (WRA) for Safe Motherhood, Sarah Brown is committed to support WRA's Maternal Mortality Campaign advocating for Millennium Development Goal 5 on improving maternal health. "To have a chance of achieving all the MDGs we must solve the one at the heart, to reduce maternal mortality," Brown said. She notes this is the only MDG on which very little progress has been made. MDG 5 aims to reduce the number of mothers dying in childbirth by three-quarters by 2015.
"The greatest gift we can give the next generation is that they can grow up with their mothers."
Sarah Brown, wife of UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown and maternal health advocate
"By saving the lives of mothers we will also give the surviving older and newborn children the best chances. It is these mothers who, if they survive, will feed their children, ensure they receive an education, and take them for vaccinations," Brown added.
The Maternal Mortality Campaign is asking leaders of the European Union, the G8 and the United Nations to:
- promise an additional US$10 billion annually for maternal, newborn and child health
- increase the number of trained health workers by 4 million
- acknowledge that maternal mortality is one of the best indicators for judging the success of a health system.
The campaign echoes the Partnership's global call for new resources to save the lives of 6 million women, newborns and children. Calling the Confederation of Midwives "a powerful group", Brown called on them to lead the long term effort to reduce maternal deaths and improve maternal health.
The 28th Triennial Congress of the International Council of Midwives (ICM) is taking place in Glasgow, Scotland from 1-5 June 2008. The ICM and WRA are member organizations of the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health