Sexual & reproductive health

Yemen’s maternal mortality ratio is approximately 148 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, which is considered one of the highest in the region. Yemen has a rapid population growth of 2.7 annually. At the current growth rate the population of Yemen will be doubled by 2040, hindering prospects of sustainable development. The prevalence of modern contraceptive is only 29% and the total demand for family planning is 62.2% and the unmet need is 28.7 %.

Yemen’s maternal mortality ratio is approximately 148 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, which is considered one of the highest in the region. Yemen has a rapid population growth of 2.7 annually. At the current growth rate the population of Yemen will be doubled by 2040, hindering prospects of sustainable development. The prevalence of modern contraceptive is only 29% and the total demand for family planning is 62.2% and the unmet need is 28.7 %.

To address this, UNFPA supports the Government of Yemen’s efforts to improve maternal health by delivering reproductive health and family planning services.  The Fund has been supporting Yemen in providing family planning services nationwide, both directly and through partners, to expand the choices couples have and by helping them to understand healthy childbearing practices regarding the number of children and spacing between births.

Some of the key interventions include:

  • Providing Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care (EmONC) equipment to health facilities, and training health workers to provide the essential evidence based interventions for saving the lives of mothers and newborns.
  • Supporting the establishment of the National Midwifery Programme and training midwives.
  • Supporting capacity building and training on Minimum Initial Services Package (MISP) in conflict-affected areas.
  • Providing family planning methods and support antenatal care and safe delivery services.
  • Delivering quality emergency obstetric services MISP to pregnant women, and distributes EmONC equipment, reproductive health kits and maternal lifesaving medicines to hospitals and family planning centers.

“As we live in wartime, there is a huge shortage in equipment,” said Ahmed Yahya Al-Khazan, the director of Al-Mahabisha Hospital in Hajjah Governorate-North of Yemen. “Bushra was the third case [of neonatal death under the current conditions]. Two similar cases died before they reached the referral hospital due to lack of incubators”