The full story of maternal mortality in Algeria is hard to pin down. It is clear that over the last two decades the maternal mortality rates have clearly been on the decline. However, there is substantial evidence that the state of affairs in not quite as good as some reports might otherwise suggest.
In 1989 the maternal mortality rates was estimated at 230/100,000 live births 1. Efforts were made to reduce the maternal mortality rate over the last two decades, however there is some dispute over how successful these programs have actually been.
For instance, the African Development Bank states that the average maternal mortality rate for the years 1990-96 was 62 per 100000, and that for the period between 2002 – 2004 maternal mortality rates fell to 37 per 100000 [2. African Development Bank, Gender Poverty and Economic Indicators on African Countries, Economic and Social Statistics Department: Tunis, Tunisia, 2007, p32]
The UNFPA put the rates in 2006 at 140 maternal mortality deaths per 100,000 live births [3. RN – (RN, UNFPA, State of the World Population 2006: A Passage to Hope; Women and International Migration, 2006, p94-9]
And the country itself records in its self reporting for the CEDAW report that its maternal mortality rate is 117/100,000 live births [4. UN, CEDAW 2005 Algeria, p4]
Clearly there is a wide discrepancy in the data that needs to be reconciled.
It is unclear what motivation that African Development Bank would have in under reporting the maternal mortality rate for Algeria, but it is clear that even Algeria does not believe in the reported number. In addition to efforts by Algeria to reduce the actual maternal mortality rate significantly more resources need to be devoted to the proper recording and reconciliation of the reported maternal mortality statistics.
- UN Algeria CEDAW 2003 52-53 ↩