Peru

Maternal health enters the information age in Peru

How the Wawared project is using technology to collect and share health data that will improve the lives of women and, perhaps eventually, everyone in the nation.

In much of the developing world, women suffer higher rates of maternal mortality and morbidity than necessary — most of the causes of ill health that lead to sickness or the death of mothers and infants are preventable. The rates are even more disproportionately high among poor and Indigenous communities.

“One of the major issues is that health-care providers and the women themselves aren’t armed with accurate, timely, trusted information to make the best decisions on care,” says Chaitali Sinha, a senior program officer with the International Development Research Centre, which supports a project called WawaredRead more in Canadian Geographic.

Fighting malaria in Northern Peru

When large-scale irrigation came to Peru’s north coast in the 1960s and 1970s it brought with it an explosion in agriculture, in particular rice cultivation. But it also brought a new disease to the area — malaria.

“The north coast is a semi-arid area, the only reason there is malaria there is because of irrigation,” says Andrés Sánchez, a senior program specialist with Canada’s International Development Research Centre, which is supporting a project in the region that could help eliminate the deadly disease. “It’s a man-made problem.”

Fortunately, there’s also a man-made solution. Read more in Canadian Geographic.