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Maternal mortality and severe maternal morbidity are devastating for women, their families, and care providers. International efforts have been made to develop and to implement data collection, management, and surveillance systems that capture pregnancy-related information that can be assessed and used to improve health and system outcomes. At present, Canada does not have a national enquiry process to review maternal deaths, severe morbidity, and near misses, and has not set targets for maternal mortality reduction. Maternal mortality rates are critical measures of maternal health and provide important information for analysis of trends and priorities among and within countries. Information about near misses as well as maternal morbidity is crucial to truly understand and to prevent maternal mortality. Canadian experts must work together with governments, provinces, and territories to determine key indicators, measurement, and meaningful data analysis strategies. These data and their comparisons will form the foundation of evidence to guide programs, policies, priorities, and interventions that will ultimately improve the health of mothers and their children.

Original publication




Journal article


J Obstet Gynaecol Can

Publication Date





1028 - 1037


Maternal morbidity, confidential enquiry, maternal mortality, pregnancy, surveillance, Canada, Female, Humans, Maternal Mortality, Population Surveillance, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Complications