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Being women in Malawi

The majority leaves their studies early, they marry while they are still very young, they become mothers soon after, having on average around six children. These births take place mostly at home, alone or with the help of unqualified personnel, due to the lack of available hospitals or the dangerous conditions of the infrastructure. The situation in Malawi is dramatic; the maternal mortality rate is 460 per hundred thousand births. In light of all of this there is a particularly important work being undertaken by the health workers at the hospital in Mtendere, a large village around a hundred kilometres south-east of the capital Lilongwe with the collaboration of the Catholic NGO Manos Unidas. Today they are working on the construction of a new maternity ward with an operating room, in order to limit the risks to mothers and unborn children. If last year in the hospital in Mtendere alone there were there were nearly one thousand births, the lack of an operating room for caesareans required the transfer of many women. Some were transferred to the hospital in Dedza, sadly lacking in medication and qualified personnel, others to Lilongwe, eighty kilometres away. Where often they arrive too late.

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St. Peter’s Square

Aug. 25, 2019

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