In the western hemisphere Haiti has the highest maternal mortality ratio at 380 deaths per 100,000 live births. While Jamaica only has 80 deaths per 100,000 live births in comparison, the number of maternal deaths is still too high for the small island nation.
Last week Jamaica’s Ministry of Health announced that it would train 1000 health workers within six months to drastically bring down the number of maternal deaths. The training — which is slated to begin in June — is also aimed at saving the lives of more newborns and children. The training program is a part of a four-year $2.8 billion European Union-funded Programme for the Reduction of Maternal and Child Mortality (PROMAC). In order to reach MDG 5, Jamaica would need to improve its MMR to 25 deaths per 100,000 live births.