Govindasamy, Pavalavalli, M. Kathryn Stewart, Shea O. Rutstein, J. Ties Boerma, A. Elisabeth Sommerfelt. 1993. High-Risk Births and Maternity Care. DHS Comparative Studies No. 8. Columbia, Maryland, USA: Macro International
This report uses data from 28 DHS surveys between 1985 and 1990 to examine the potential mortality reductions which could be achieved through increased use of family planning and wider access to maternity care. First, differentials in the coverage and utilization of maternity care are examined. Next, the fertility-related factors that place women and their children at high risk are explored. Data on women who fall into high-risk categories are then used to calculate a new measure of unmet need for family planning with the goal of avoiding high-risk births. The report concludes that the prevention of maternal mortality includes, in part, the prevention of high-risk pregnancies and a broadened definition of unmet need for family planning that considers known mortality risks associated with maternal age, parity, and birth spacing.