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Unsafe abortion – A Risk factor for maternal mortality in Liberia - An analysis of the characteristics of unsafe abortion clients and risk factors for maternal morbidity and mortality

Bannet Ndyanabangi, Maybe Livingstone, Woseh Gobeh, Gorbee G. Logan, Laura Atukunda


Worldwide, an estimated 68,000 women die yearly due to unsafe abortion practices. In Liberia, the maternal mortality ratio is 1072 deaths per 100,000 live births. However, there has not been a study conducted to understand the relationship between unsafe abortion and maternal mortality. We conducted a retrospective cohort study at three county hospitals and assessed obstetric data gathered using a defined questionnaire in 2016 - 2018, from maternal-child health units. The results of the study suggest a strong association between unsafe abortion and maternal morbidity and mortality and also provide insight into the characteristics and factors that put women and girls who have unsafe abortions at risk.  The results can inform programs and policies on age disaggregation of women and girls who choose abortion. The variation in the association between unsafe abortion and the risk factors, have implications for maternal morbidity and mortality. (Afr J Reprod Health 2021; 25[6]: 43-50).

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