Finland is the best place in the world to be a mom, U.S. ranks 30

May 7, 2013 at 11:04 PM
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WESTPORT, Conn., May 7 (UPI) -- The best country in the world to be a mother is Finland, the United States is No. 30, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo is last, a non-profit group says.

Save the Children's State of the World's Mothers report releases Tuesday said a baby's birthday is the most dangerous day of his or her life -- in the United States and almost every country in the world.

The United States ranks as the 30th best place to be a mother, just above Japan and South Korea -- but below all of Western Europe, Australia, Slovenia, Singapore, New Zealand, Estonia, Canada, Czech Republic, Israel, Belarus, Lithuania and Poland. The Mothers' Index rankings are determined by five indicators on education, income, women's political representation and the chances a mother and her baby will survive.

The United States scored 10th for both education and economic status of women, but it scored low on maternal health (46th), children's well-being (41st) and the political status of women (89th).

Only five developed countries in the world did worse than the United States for maternal mortality: Albania, Latvia, Moldova, the Russian Federation and Ukraine.

The report included a new Birth Day Risk Index ranking 186 countries by the chances a baby will die on the first day of life.

The analysis by Save the Children and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine found the United States is a riskier place to be born than 68 other countries.

In the industrialized world, the United States has 60 percent of all first-day deaths. Approximately 11,300 U.S. babies died on the first day of life in 2011, the report said. Some U.S. counties have first-day death rates common in the developing world, the report said.

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