While maternal deaths have fallen by around 45 per cent over the past two decades, 800 women still die every day - over 300,000 every year - from preventable causes linked to pregnancy and child birth.
For every woman who dies in childbirth, around 20 more suffer injury, infection or disease – that’s a total of over 10 million women each year.
Newborn deaths – children under one month of age – have also reduced, but 2.6 million still occur every year. That's over 7,000 per day. Additionally, estimates show a further 2.6 million stillbirths per year.
SDG3 sets a target of reducing the global maternal deaths to less than 70 per 100,000 and newborn deaths to less than 12 per 1000 live births by 2030. So far, progress in most developing countries is too slow to achieve this.
Most deaths seem to occur between the third trimester and the first week after the end of pregnancy.
Ninety-nine per cent of these deaths occur in the developing world.
In the developed world, a woman's lifetime risk of dying during or following pregnancy is one in 4,900 but in developing countries that risk is one in 180, and even more common in countries currently or recently in conflict.