UNICEF Maldives says the organization does not conduct its own investigation but works in partnership with national authorities to conduct investigations when necessary.

This comes after the MP for Th. Guraidhoo Constituency and Vice President of PPM Mohamed Ghassan Maumoon called on UNICEF to investigate the recent spike in prenatal death to prevent further negligence.

Answering to questions by ‘The Press’, UNICEF Maldives said that there are existing Maldivian protocols to standard procedures for conducting these investigations.

It said that UNICEF would work with the Ministry of Health to gain a better understanding of these cases.

UNICEF also said that what is essential, is to ensure immediate unrestricted safe access to essential maternal and child health care to prevent more unnecessary death of mothers and children.

With the Covid-19 crisis, several vulnerabilities in the country’s healthcare system have emerged and this has mostly affected pregnant women. The ban on travel between the islands has left many pregnant women unable to access timely medical treatment, as most islands do not offer antenatal care and services.

Four prenatal deaths were reported in the space of two months but with the ease of the restrictive measures against Covid-19, antenatal care is expected to be strengthened across the country.