Maternal health is about more than just mothers and babies. Across the globe the very business of delivering life into the world is determined by power, politics and, all too frequently, poverty.
In fact, maternal mortality is the greatest health inequality in the world. Ninety-nine per cent of women who die in childbirth are in the developing world and most of these deaths could be avoided if resources were invested to pay for adequate healthcare.
Twenty million of the estimated 210 million women who become pregnant each year experience life-threatening complications and pregnancy is the biggest killer of women aged 15 to 19 in the developing world.
A girl growing up in Chad today has about the same chance of dying in childbirth as she has of going to secondary school, while a 15-year-old girl in Afghanistan has a one-in-11 chance of dying in pregnancy or childbirth.
Every year, 3.6 million babies die before they are a month old.
We want to hear from you. What do you think the greatest concern is surrounding childbirth in your country? How do the aspirations and hopes of expectant parents vary from one country to another? What should be done to improve maternal health across the world? Tell us your stories relating to the world's greatest health inequality?
Source: Al Jazeera