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SOGC Calls for National Canadian Surveillance System to Reduce Maternal Mortality

The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada (SOGC) is calling for a national surveillance system to accurately track the incidence of maternal mortality and severe morbidity in Canada. A review article, appearing in this month’s Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Canada (JOGC), says miscalculated or underreported data collection makes it difficult to set targets and develop programs, policies, priorities and interventions that could save lives.

“Although Canada has the lowest maternal mortality rate among North American countries, we know the data is not capturing many non-obstetric causes, and near misses,” says Dr. Jocelynn Cook, Chief Scientific Officer, SOGC. “We also believe the WHO definitions of maternal mortality and morbidity need to be extended to 42 days following childbirth, and include other causes due to mental health, substance use, violence and accidents.”