Zim Scores Big As Martenal Mortality Falls
MUTARE– Zimbabwe is gaining positive ground in its war against maternal mortality according to a new report from a multi sector nationwide research, which indicates a decline in the deaths of mothers.
Statistics from the 2019 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) research shows a decrease in maternal mortality from 614 to 462 maternal deaths per 100 000 live births since 2014, and an increase in full immunization coverage to 85%.
Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZIMSTAT) disseminated the wide-ranging key findings from the MICS, the most comprehensive and largest source of statistically sound and internationally comparable data on women and children worldwide.
The large scale and challenging field survey was conducted between January and April last year for the 2019 MICS and received funding from the European Union, UKAID, and the Government of Sweden as well as UNICEF and UNFPA.
The MICS involves a wide range of stakeholders at different levels including key Government Ministries and Departments, namely ZIMSTAT, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Ministry of Health and Child Care; Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, and Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.
Through these efforts, Zimbabwe became only the 14th country to complete and release the 6th round of MICS results.
However, more needs to be done in several areas such as to reduction of child marriages, which remains at a paltry 5% for women under 15, and a reducing of neonatal mortality.
In a press statement UNICEF, Representative Laylee Moshiri said government has demonstrated commitment to the importance of robust indicators on the plight of women and children.
Moshiri said the country has set a positive standard in the region as this survey helps government to steer forward sustainable development.
“Though other countries are following, including some in the Southern African Region, having Zimbabwe as one of the first few to complete the survey is testament to the value that the Government of Zimbabwe attaches to the importance of robust indicators on the situation of children and women.
“I am very excited today that we are disseminating the 2019 MICS results. The results could not have come at any better time than now when the Government of Zimbabwe is in the process of coming up with the 1st 5 Year National Development Plan aimed at steering the country towards sustainable development,” said Moshiri
ZIMSTAT Director General Taguma Mahonde, commended development partners for chipping in to support the survey to provide a comprehensive picture on the state of women and children.
“The MICS are conducted under the auspices of the Zimbabwe United Nations Development Assistance Framework (ZUNDAF) jointly coordinated by the Office of the President and Cabinet and the UN Resident Coordinator,”
“I would like to commend UNICEF for coordinating the provision of financial and technical assistance for the MICS without which this survey would not have been possible. The partnership with the Government of Zimbabwe is appreciated and I hope it will grow from strength to strength,” he said.
Since its inception in 1995, 326 MICS surveys have been conducted by 116 countries generating data on key indicators on the well-being of children and women, and helping shape policies and programmes for the improvement of their lives. MICS is a major source of data for countries to measure progress on the 2030 Agenda and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
The survey findings provide disaggregated data to measure progress and assess gaps on key indicators in numerous thematic areas affecting women and children’s lives such as child and maternal mortality, fertility, child health and nutrition, birth registration, adolescents, HIV and sexual behavior, child discipline and domestic violence, early childhood development, education, and drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, amongst many others.