Science, Sex and Society – why maternal mortality is still a global health issue
This paper, directed to anaesthetists, highlights the causes and issues with maternal mortality. The author refers to the work of the UN Millennium Development goals, and highlights that the goals from 2015 to 2030 are the Sustainable Development goals, which focus less on survival and more on well-being and living. The author explains maternal mortality based on science, sex, and society, arguing that all three have a sufficient influence on why maternal mortality is still a problem. Recognizing that maternal deaths are more of a problem in areas of conflict, poverty, and low to middle income countries, the author argues that science needs to include pregnant women in more research studies and clinical trials to encourage future researchers to become engaged with issues related to pregnant women. The role of sex, including the mistrust of health systems and societal norms contribute to delays in pregnant women seeking care, affecting maternal deaths. In addition, society’s role in maternal mortality is recognized as women having less voice and agency and gender inequality contributes to unsafe choices leading to maternal mortality. Therefore, using references and research reviews, the author argues the that issue of maternal mortality is intertwined with science, sex, and society.