|Type||Journal Article - Contraception|
|Title||Incidence of abortion-related near-miss complications in Zambia: cross-sectional study in Central, Copperbelt and Lusaka Provinces|
To describe the magnitude and severity of abortion-related complications in health facilities and calculate the incidence of abortion-related near-miss complications at the population level in three provinces in Zambia, a country where abortion is legal but stigmatized.
We conducted a cross-sectional study in 35 district, provincial and tertiary hospitals over 5 months. All women hospitalized for abortion-related complications were eligible for inclusion. Cases of abortion-related near-miss, moderate and low morbidity were identified using adapted World Health Organization (WHO) near-miss and the prospective morbidity methodology criteria. Incidence was calculated by annualizing the number of near-misses and dividing by the population of women of reproductive age. We calculated the abortion-related near-miss rate, abortion-related near-miss ratio and the hospital mortality index.
Participating hospitals recorded 26,723 births during the study. Of admissions for post-abortion care, 2406 (42%) were eligible for inclusion. Near-misses constituted 16% of admitted complications and there were 14 abortion-related maternal deaths. The hospital mortality index was 3%; the abortion-related near-miss rate for the three provinces was 72 per 100,000 women, and the near-miss ratio was 450 per 100,000 live births.
Abortion-related near-miss and mortality are challenges for the Zambian health system. Adapted to reflect health systems capabilities, the WHO near-miss criteria can be applied to routine hospital records to obtain useful data in low-income settings. Reducing avoidable maternal mortality and morbidity due to abortion requires efforts to de-stigmatize access to abortion provision, and expanded access to modern contraception.
|»||Zambia - Demographic and Health Survey 2013-2014|