Press Release
May 8, 2011


As the world celebrates Mother's Day, Senator Edgardo J. Angara called for the protection and improved welfare of one of the most important pillars of society.

"We need to create an environment in which mothers can attend to the health and welfare of their children by making sure that these women have access to the needed healthcare and educational facilities and providing them with equal opportunities in society," said Angara.

In a recent study called the "State of the World's Mothers 2011", the Philippines had a Mother's Index ranking--an indicator of a maternal wellbeing--of 49 among 79 less-developed countries. This research was conducted by the Save the Children foundation, which serves marginalized children and families throughout the world.

The report reveals a 1 in 320 risk of maternal death during childbirth--a function affected by the number of children and spacing between pregnancies, health and nutrition status, as well as the conditions under which she gives birth. In the country, only 62% of births are attended by qualified health workers.

The number of maternal deaths in the country is decreasing--but not fast enough to reach the Millennium Development Goal of reducing it by three-quarters by 2015.

"To secure the well-being of our society as a whole, we must first ensure the welfare of a vital sector--the mothers, the most important women in our lives," asserted Angara.

Angara had authored the Magna Carta for Women, signed into law back in 2009. This now serves as the "bill of rights" for women, ensuring gender equality in the political, industrial and cultural spheres.

He also filed the Community Health Placement bill, which would decrease both infant and maternal mortality rates by establishing health centers even in remote towns and barrios. This enhanced access to healthcare would boost the percentage of women getting pre- and post-natal checkups.

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