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Zika: Women Told to Delay Pregnancy, but Lack Reproductive Rights to Heed Call

By Lisa Nikolau, Humanosphere

A woman covers her mouth outside her home while city workers fumigate to combat the Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes that transmit the Zika virus in El Salvador, Jan. 26, 2016. (AP Photo/Salvador Melendez)

A woman covers her mouth outside her home while city workers fumigate to combat the Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes that transmit the Zika virus in El Salvador, Jan. 26, 2016. (AP Photo/Salvador Melendez)

In response to the recent outbreak of the Zika virus throughout Latin America, health officials in El Salvador have urged women not to get pregnant until 2018 in an effort to combat an increase in a birth defect known as microcephaly, which is suspected to be caused by the mosquito-borne illness.

“We’d like to suggest to all the women of fertile age that they take steps to plan their pregnancies, and avoid getting pregnant between this year and next,” said El Salvador’s Deputy Health Minister Eduardo Espinoza. Read More

Ending Preventable Stillbirths – The Next Frontier in Maternal Infant Child Health

Sleeping babyAs a lucky mother of three beautiful kids, I can tell you that there are few joys that compare with the birth of a baby. Across the globe, bringing new life into the world is celebrated; parents wait with excitement and anticipation, and those first moments of life are truly extraordinary.

But as a clinician who has spent many years in delivery rooms, I can tell you that there are few sorrows that compare with the loss and devastation faced by parents, families, healthcare providers and communities when a baby is born stillborn. Read More

Women’s Justice Initiative Addresses Gender Inequality and Violence

By Pangea Giving

The municipality of Patzun in the Chimaltenango district of Guatemala is not unique. Like other regions of Guatemala it’s a highly patriarchal society and gender inequality is entrenched in the culture. The United Nations estimates close to 45% of Guatemala women are victims of gender- based violence and it’s even higher among rural indigenous women due to social isolation and limited access to resources. Read More