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July 18, 2014

What explains the enormous more than 50 fold difference in maternal mortality rates across this river? Both areas of Tajikistan and Afghanistan are "in geographically contiguous poor, post-conflict, highly conservative, mountainous countries." How can the obstetric risks for women be so different? To continue our review of this fascinating study, we take a closer look at the differences between the Tajik and Afghan sides of the river as reported in the study by Kylea Liese.

maternal mortality | Afghanistan | violence against women
July 03, 2014

“Even on a mountain, there is still a road.”
Pashto proverb

Why are women just over the border of a small 60 foot river, in Tajikistan, about fifty times less likely to die in childbirth as compared to women in Afghanistan?

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July 01, 2014

Technology is neither good nor bad; nor is it neutral
Melvin Kranzberg, The Six Laws of Technology

In Austin, Texas today law student Cody Wilson is printing guns. Well, technically, he prints parts of guns. And these are not just any guns; Cody Wilson prints semiautomatic weapons. In seven hours, Mr. Wilson’s Defense Distributed Company prints a key component of firearms (the AR-15 lower receivers), the exact component that (not coincidentally) happens to be tracked by the U.S. government.

June 25, 2014

Meet Aisha Khadar, Executive Director of Khadarlis Global and nurse by trade. Khadarlis Global works to provide healthcare and sustainable development in Sierra Leone, a country that is known globally as stricken by war and poverty. But Aisha represents a different face of Sierra Leone—a member of the diaspora connected to an ancestral village and with the well-being of her compatriots at the heart of everything she does We at Maternova were blown away by Aisha’s passion and drive when we met with her last week. Having immigrated to the United States, Aisha returned to Sierra Leone after the civil war and used a Médecins Sans Frontières building in Jimmi (Bo district) to enhance a clinic. The clinic is an example of how a health system is built, or rebuilt from scratch.

"State of the World's Midwives"
June 06, 2014

A few weeks ago we said that the State of the World's Mothers was in our view the most important global report around. Well, we didn't lie, but a tie for 'most important' would have to include the State of the World' Midwives. This report was launched for the first time in 2011, and this second edition, the 2014 report, saw considerable publicity associated with the Triennial International Conference of Midwives in Prague.

Since 2011, the report does take note of tangible positive changes that have occurred, including the following:

-33 of the 73 countries (45%) report vigorous attempts to improve workforce retention
in remote areas;
-20 countries (28%) have started to increase recruitment and deployment of midwives;

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