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Young mothers risk death of self, infantscomment (0)

May 20, 2004

WESTPORT, Conn. — More than 1 million infants and about 70,000 teenage mothers die each year in developing countries because adolescent girls are marrying and having children before they are physically prepared for parenthood, a report from Save the Children has found. The fifth annual “State of the World’s Mothers” report ranked the well-being of mothers in 119 countries and declared Sweden the best country to be a mother and Niger the worst. The United States ranked 10th.

The ranking, called “The Mothers’ Index,” was based on the health, education and political status of mothers in those countries.

The report found that a mother in the bottom 10 countries is 26 times more likely to see her child die in the first year and 750 times more likely to die herself in childbirth or pregnancy than a mother in the top 10 countries. Save the Children, based in Westport, Conn., is a nonprofit humanitarian organization.

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