• Midwife Chioma Ochomma listens for a fetal heartbeat at the Doctors Without Borders-run Aiyetoro Health Centre. She couldn't find it - the fetus had died. (Alice Proujansky)

    Global Health

    Christy Turlington Burns: Women in the World Meet Mothers in the World

    The founder of Every Mother Counts on why maternal health is a fundamental human rights issue. Images by Alice Proujansky.

    Bringing new life into the world can be risky business for moms and the babies they carry. Maternal and infant mortality are global tragedies, but the real tragedy is we know how to prevent most of these deaths. This is the abstract to the panel I am participating in today as part of the Women in the World Summit. These two sentences define the global maternal health issue at large: Every single day, approximately 800 women die during childbirth or pregnancy, equaling roughly 287,000 women a year.

    This is a steep decline from the 358,000 maternal deaths reported in 2008.