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23 May, 2018 Statement of UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem on the International Day to End Obstetric Fistula, 23 May 2018 Pregnancy and childbirth should be among the happiest of occasions in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, this is not the case for many of the world’s poorest and most marginalized...
A health worker checks on a pregnant woman during a home visit. Access to quality maternal health care, especially emergency care during childbirth, is essential to preventing obstetric fistula. © UNFPA Ethiopia/Abraham Gelaw
22 May, 2018 JIMMA, Ethiopia – After her wedding at age 20 in the Seka District of Ethiopia, Birkisa Aba Nega became pregnant. Then again, and again. Four of the five children she delivered died, and she was left with a debilitating childbirth injury – an obstetric fistula. Pregnancy can be a dangerous time,...
A medical team at Al Thawara Hospital successfully treated Shaima's obstetric fistula. © UNFPA Yemen
21 May, 2018 SANA’A, Yemen – Shaima, 20, has experienced more than her share of suffering. Displaced by conflict, she was married off at 14, then endured pregnancy after pregnancy before her body was ready. She developed devastating complications in childbirth, including an obstetric fistula  – a traumatic...

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Suffering in silence: Obstetric fistula in Asia
Suffering in silence: Obstetric fistula in Asia