Maternal health

Maternal health refers to the health of women and childbearing people during pregnancy, childbirth, and the post-natal months. Despite overall improvement in maternal outcomes since 1990, disparities remain.

Photo by Reuters/Anushree Fadnavis.

Over 2 million deaths were caused by maternal and neonatal disorders worldwide in 2019.
80% of the world’s maternal deaths occurred in only 30 countries, including 7 of the world’s 8 most populous countries.
35% fewer women died during pregnancy and childbirth between 2000 and 2019, compared with 5.6% between 1990 and 2000, likely reflecting increased attention and funding for maternal health sparked by the United Nations’ (UN) Millennium Development Goals.
51.1% fewer women died from hemorrhage (the leading cause of maternal death worldwide) in 2019 than died in 1990.

Interactive data visuals

Interactive Data Visual

Maternal Health Atlas

Analyze causes of death or disability in women, and compare trends over time.

Datasets in our catalog

Visit the Global Health Data Exchange (GHDx) to download our estimates and data sources for maternal health.





Building Momentum: Global Progress Toward Reducing Maternal and Child Mortality

This detailed report includes data on mortality trends for more than 180 countries over two decades. Researchers at IHME, working in collaboration with researchers at the University of Queensland, gathered vital registration data, censuses, surveys, and other sources to create datasets that were more than twice as large as those available for previous studies on maternal and child mortality.


Health topic