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A Powerful Moment for the World's Women: Marking Progress and Charting the Future at Women Deliver 2013

What an exciting week for global women's health. The third Women Deliver conference is taking place in Malaysia. We are in booth 244!

So much energy has gone into putting together the agenda for this event and creating the background reports, marking progress and charting the future.

We'd like to focus just briefly on the [Countdown to 2015 report just published](http://countdown2015mnch.org/structure). The authors highlight many challenges but this paragraph rings true:

**But, ultimately, this report is about hope. The country profiles contain many success stories
which show that commitment, investment, and coordinated action can result in concrete
achievements that will save countless lives.**

Let's focus on a truly stunning statistic:

"Thirty Countdown countries achieved reductions of 50% or more in the maternal mortality
ratio between 1990 and 2010, and three countries (Equatorial Guinea, Nepal, and Vietnam) achieved reductions of at least 75%."

We believe that in the short-term the key to moving quickly is getting the right supplies to the midwives and frontline health workers. The global community must work to train more obstetricians, to post skilled birth attendants in rural areas and to radically improve the quality of care. But supplies at the periphery can also be game-changing. Handheld ultra light low cost ultrasounds can be used by midwives in rural areas-- and we will soon be carrying these. The non-pneumatic anti-shock garment can transport a woman from rural areas in to receive IV and blood--and we are helping to distribute this. Rapid blood tests and syphilis tests can be done in the periphery and give advance warning of HIV or syphilis with profound positive effects for mother and infant.

The clarion call of the Women Deliver Conference is "it's time to invest in women and girls." We agree.

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