Press Release

After Chinese Earthquake, UNFPA Mobilizes Supplies to Help Pregnant Women Deliver Safely

21 May 2008
Author: UNFPA

BANGKOK/NEW YORK—UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is mobilizing life-saving reproductive health supplies to help China respond to the deadly earthquake in Sichuan Province.

UNFPA has made available $550,000 of its own funds and secured an additional $114,000 from UN emergency funds to ensure that pregnant women can deliver their babies in safe conditions and receive proper emergency obstetric services when necessary.

Accepting the Fund’s offer of assistance, the Chinese Government has asked UNFPA to provide reproductive health supplies, including clean delivery kits for primary health centres and hospital equipment needed for Caesarean deliveries and blood transfusions. UNFPA assistance also includes hygiene kits for displaced individuals and funding to address immediate shelter needs.

Chinese authorities estimate that the earthquake has affected some 5.7 million people, and that many may stay in temporary camps for up to one year. In such situations, the risks normally associated with childbirth are often heightened for displaced women.

Other UN agencies are also providing coordinated assistance in response to the disaster, including health, shelter water and sanitation materials.

***

UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is an international development agency that promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity. UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies and programmes to reduce poverty and to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free of HIV/AIDS, and every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect.

Contact Information:

William A. Ryan
Bangkok
Tel.: +66 2 288 2446
Email: ryanw@unfpa.org

Omar Gharzeddine
New York
Tel.: +1 (212) 297-5028
Email: gharzeddine@unfpa.org

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