Throughout 191 nations worldwide, this year's observance of World Health Day could have been called Mother's Day.
The World Health Organization (WHO) chose safe motherhood as its theme for the observance, held April 7, to emphasize the high morbidity and mortality women suffer during pregnancy and childbirth. According to the WHO, more than 585000 women die each year from complications related to pregnancy and birth. Nearly 99% of the deaths occur in developing nations.
Voelker R. Safe Motherhood. JAMA. 1998;279(14):1058. doi:10.1001/jama.279.14.1058