'Coordinated efforts will improve maternal health care'

New Delhi, Aug 13 (IANS): Coordinated efforts by various ministries will strengthen the government systems and will help in enhancing maternal health care, Planning Commission member Syeda Hameed said Tuesday.

"Planning Commission is considering having a meeting with multiple ministries like health and women and child development on urgent cross-cutting issues like health and nutrition," Hameed said.

She suggested that recommendations on crucial health issues like maternal health care can be shared with the National Rural Health Mission steering group meeting that would be held soon in August.

"Apart from ministries, the civil society groups play a crucial role in strengthening government systems," Hameed said.

She was speaking at a national consultation organised by various health activists to discuss deaths among pregnant women in India.

Informing that government policies had led to a reduction in maternal mortality, Health and Family Welfare Secretary Keshav Desiraju said: "Focusing on institutional delivery numbers had led to neglecting what happened to women and child after birth. We are now giving importance on strengthening a team in communities to support safer home births."

Health activists informed that women continue to die during pregnancy and labour because health facilities in many parts of the country are not equipped to provide emergency care.


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Title: 'Coordinated efforts will improve maternal health care'

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