Confidential enquiries into maternal mortality in the United Arab Emirates: A feasibility study

Saad Ghazal-Aswad, Padmanabhan Badrinath, Islam Sidky, Yousef Abdul-Razak, John Davison, Hisham M. Mirghani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: Routine confidential enquiry into maternal deaths is not yet part of the United Arab Emirates health care system. A confidential enquiry into maternal deaths was undertaken to test the feasibility of this approach and to identify the causes and preventability of maternal deaths. Material &Methods: Data on all maternal deaths over a six year period from 1998 to 2003 were abstracted and reviewed by a panel of experts to assign the cause if in doubt, and to determine whether the deaths were preventable. Results: Over the six year period, 26 deaths were identified with 122 075 births and the maternal mortality ratio was 21.2/100 000 live births. The mean maternal age at death was 32.3 years and two-thirds of the deaths occurred during the postpartum period. The leading causes of death were thromboembolic events, hemorrhage and infection. After reviewing the clinical data the expert panel concluded that one third of the deaths were avoidable. Conclusion: This first ever confidential enquiry has shown that it is feasible to adopt this approach in the United Arab Emirates and the causes identified would be of help in prioritizing clinical guidelines development and training programs aimed at professionals, which will ultimately lead to safer motherhood for women.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-214
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Causes
  • Confidential enquiry
  • Maternal mortality
  • United Arab Emirates

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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