Indicating Inequities: Reproductive Risk in 2007

Nada Chaya, Population Action International
Sarah Haddock, Population Action International

Every year, over half a million women - typically poor, undeducated, and living in rural areas or urban slums - die during pregnancy and childbirth. Various factors contribute to poor reprodutive health (RH). We classify 130 countries into five quintiles of reproductive risk (highest, high, moderate, low, lowest) based on a Reproductive Risk Index constructed of indicators of RH outcomes and services. The study takes a lifecycle approach to RH in which the reproductive cycle is divided into four stages: sex, pregnancy, childbirth and survival. The first three stages are then assessed on how safe and voluntary they are. We found that countries at highest reproductive risk are low-income countries. In contrast, the world's wealthiest countries are at lowest risk. This points to the need for better identifying differentials in RH and social services and outcomes among various groups, prioritizing investments by risk factors, and providing services accordingly.

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Presented in Poster Session 5