Women are dying in childbirth at an alarming rate in countries hit by the Ebola epidemic. Aid agencies warn that as many as one in seven are at risk because helpers fear contact with bodily fluids.
The United Nations Population Fund estimates that 800,000 women in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia will give birth in the next 12 months. Some 120,000 of these could face life-threatening complications and tens of thousands die, according to a group of 13 leading UK charities, including ActionAid.
Korto Williams is the head of ActionAid in Liberia. He says: “We have to do more to [prevent this]. We have to ensure that pregnant women get the care they need or we will see the rate of maternal deaths skyrocket.”
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