Ghana Journal of Development Studies

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Human Rights-Based Approach to Reducing Preventable Maternal Deaths in Ghana: A Six-year Review of Media Reports

Renee Aku Sitsofe Morhe, Felix Kwame Sosoo, Emmanuel Komla Senanu Morhe


This paper sought to ascertain the extent to which litigation is highlighted in reports on maternal deaths in the Ghanaian media. Using internet search we reviewed reports on maternal death in the media from January, 2013 to December, 2018. Thematic analyses of the reports that satisfied the inclusion/exclusion criteria were performed. It was established that healthcare leaders and key state personalities have through the media created good public awareness about unacceptably high maternal deaths in the country. The root causes were highlighted. Only few case reports were presented and there had been scanty emphasis on using legal means of addressing the problem of inadequate access as a human rights violation. In conclusion rights-based approach to addressing poor maternal health challenges in Ghana is grossly underutilized. Stakeholders are encouraged to include the option of using legal redress as a means of ensuring government and healthcare providers keep their promise of providing quality maternity care to reduce preventable deaths of women.

Keywords: Ghana, Litigation, Rights-Based Approach, Maternal Health, Media Reports

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