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Half a million pregnant women at risk from Pakistan floods

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Save the Children have raised strong concerns about the impact of the recent floods on pregnant women, medical mothers and children, reports The Press Association today.

The aid agency said at least half a million expectant mothers could be at risk from infection and disease, with tens of thousands of newborn babies and women in potential danger in the coming months. Many expectant mothers may be forced to give birth in temporary shelters or tents, with no access to clean water or healthcare.

Matt Wingate of Save the Children said: “We know that mums are already giving birth in the flimsiest of shelters, only metres from dirty floodwater. This presents appalling risks in terms of disease and infection, and ultimately poses a serious threat to the lives of mums and their newborn babies.”

Given that Pakistan already has exceptionally high infant and maternal rates, the increased levels of danger following the recent floods is incredibly concerning. According to UNICEF, 276 in every 100,00 mothers die in pregnancy, compared to just 17 in every 100,000 in the US. Nearly one in every ten children will not live to see her or his 5th birthday, with the majority of infant deaths being due to diarrhoea, pneumonia or other entirely preventable diseases.

Save the Children have established mobile clinics and have reached more than 160,000 people already. You can donate to their Pakistan Flood Appeal by visiting their website.

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