Best and Worst Countries for Mothers

Best and Worst Countries for MothersBest and Worst Countries for Mothers

Norway topped the list while Somalia remained last for the second year in a row in Save the Children’s “State of the World’s Mothers 2015: The Urban Disadvantage,” released recently.

Russia, Turkey, Iran, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, ranked 56th, 65th, 84th, 90th, 100th, 149th  and 152nd, respectively.

The five indicators in the 2015 Mothers’ Index of 179 countries are the lifetime risk of maternal death; children’s well-being as measured by their under-5 mortality rate; educational status, as measured by children’s expected years of formal schooling; economic status, as measured by gross national income per capita; and political status, measured by women’s participation in national government, CNN reported.

One out of every 2000 mothers in Iran dies from pregnancy related causes. Under-5 mortality rate (per 1000 live births) is 16.8 and expected number of years of formal schooling is 15.1.  Also gross national income per capita is $ 5780 and the participation of women in national government is 3.1% (parliamentary seats held by women).  In the previous 2010 survey, under-5 mortality was 25 out of every 1,000 and expected number of years of formal schooling was 13.9, a significant improvement now.

 Norway Tops

According to the survey, the ten best countries for mothers include: Norway, Finland, Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, Netherlands, Spain, Germany, Australia and Belgium while the worst countries for mothers are: Somalia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, The Central African Republic, Mali, Niger, Gambia, Côte d’Ivoire, Chad, Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone.

The contrast between the top and bottom countries remains stark. While 0.3% of Norwegian children die before their 5th birthday, this figure is 15% for Somali children. Somali children who survive get fewer than 2.5 years, while Norwegian children get 17.5 years of formal education.

“We need to do more to make sure that all mothers and babies have a fair chance of survival and a happy, healthy life -- no matter where they live,” said Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children.

 Improving Lives

Save the Children works to improve the lives of children around the world, through better nutrition, sanitation, health care and education for mothers and their children.

One woman in 18 in Somalia will eventually die in childbirth, while one in 20 will die in Niger. One child in seven in Somalia, Chad and the Central African Republic will not live to see his or her 5th birthday.

While the conditions in which many of the world’s children live are grim, about 17,000 fewer children die daily versus 25 years ago. And the number of children who die before their 5th birthday has been cut almost in half, from 90 to 46 deaths per 1,000 live births.