The Maternal Mortality ratio (MMR) in the country is 186 deaths per 100,000 live births. This was stated in the survey that was released during a national dissemination event held here on Thursday. According to the survey report, 12 percent of deaths among ever-married women between the ages of 15-49 in the past three years are due to maternal causes. It stated that the maternal deaths are divided into two categories. Direct maternal deaths refer to deaths resulting from obstetric complications during pregnancy, labour, or 42 days after delivery or the end of pregnancy. Indirect maternal deaths result from non-obstetric complications aggravated by pregnancy. The federal and provincial governments are, however, aim to reduce the maternal mortality ratio to 70 deaths per 100,000 live births by 2030. Speaking on the occasion, the Honourable President Dr. Arif Alvi said the released report provides vital data for monitoring and evaluating maternal health care programmes in Pakistan and also assesses Pakistan’s progress towards meeting the Sustainable Development Goal of reducing maternal mortality. Pervaiz Ahmed Junejo, Executive Director, National Institute of Population Studies (NIPS) informed that this was the first exclusive nationwide survey on maternal mortality in Pakistan. The survey report provides the government of the country and its development partners with data for program managers and policymakers to make evidence-based decisions to improve maternal health care nationwide. The Survey which was undertaken in the four provinces, Islamabad Capital Territory, Gilgit Baltistan and Azad Jammu Kashmir asked households about deaths of married women between the ages of 15-49 years to determine maternal mortality. Maternal mortality includes deaths of ever-married women during pregnancy, delivery, and 42 days after delivery or the end of pregnancy, excluding deaths that were due to accidents or violence. The majority (96 percent) of maternal deaths were direct maternal deaths, while four percent of deaths were indirect maternal deaths. The most common causes of death include obstetric haemorrhage (41 percent) and hypertensive disorders (29 percent). Antenatal care (ANC) and delivery care coverage in Pakistan are improving. Since 1991, more women are receiving antenatal care with a skilled provider, such as an obstetrician, specialist, doctor, nurse, midwife, lady health visitor, or community midwife. Over the past three decades, ANC coverage by a skilled provider has improved dramatically from 26 percent in 1990-91 to 91 percent in 2019. Delivery in health facilities has substantially increased during the same time period from 14 percent in 1990-91 to 71 percent in 2019. While this is a positive development, 29 percent of live births are still delivered at home, putting mothers and babies at risk. In their statements on the occasion, Dr. Faisal Sultan, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister and Dr. Nausheen Hamid, Parliamentary Secretary for Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination emphasized the need for evidence based data for improving quality and accessibility of health services available in the country. Representatives of the United Nations Population Fund, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, US Aid, ICF and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which provided technical and financial support for the research study, reiterated support for maternal health initiatives in Pakistan.