Equal access to healthcare is a fundamental right. In reality, however, Europe’s migrant and ethnic minority mothers are often failing to receive adequate treatment. This is particularly crucial when it comes to healthcare before, during, and after pregnancy. An estimated 500,000 women in the EU will go through their first months of pregnancy with no access to health services and maternal deaths are still too common.
In a Europe with open borders, women may be excluded from healthcare for many reasons: systemic failures, cultural barriers, lack of information, and wider issues. The Alliance for Maternal Health Equality believes that these problems must be overcome. Among our main priorities, we want to ensure that policies across Europe guarantee equal access to high quality maternal healthcare for all women, regardless of nationality, background or socio-economic status.
Policy needs to take into account women’s differing needs, facilitating an environment in which pregnant women and mothers can make informed decisions and are able to participate in their local healthcare system. Data is lacking, which means that numerous problems on maternal health remain hidden. We want to bring the issue into the spotlight, focusing on real life situations and clear statistics, offering evidence that things must change for Europe’s mothers.
Every pregnant woman deserves high quality healthcare and we will work towards achieving this. The Alliance for Maternal Health Equality will focus on improving health literacy, strengthening care networks, furthering research and implementing change at policy level.