Eight years ago, the United States ranked sixth on a list of great countries to be a mother. This year? Not even in the top 30.
We're not number one, we're number thirty-one. Out of 178. As ABC News reports, nonprofit organization Save The Children compiles an annual list, which takes into account the lifetime risk of maternal death, as well as maternal health, children's well-being, and educational, economic, and political stats:
"In the U.S., the lifetime risk of maternal death has risen more than 50 percent since we launched our first report in 2000 – from 1 in 3,700 to 1 in 2,400," said Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children, a nonprofit children's charity. "Today, an American woman faces the same lifetime risk of maternal death as a woman in Iran or Romania."
Check out a PDF of the index here. The countries at the bottom of the list suffer from armed conflicts and natural disasters, and according to the report, " In the Democratic Republic of Congo, which ranks second-to-last on the list, it's more dangerous to be a woman or child than an armed fighter."
That said, there is upward mobility: After being ranked among the worst in 2010 and 2011, Afghanistan has jumped up 32 spots, due to education commitments, immunization programs, and an investment in midwife training.
The top countries are European: Finland, Norway, Sweden, and Iceland. Australia is also in the top 10. The United States — which Americans like to call the "greatest" country in the world — ranks below Italy, Singapore, France, Canada, Slovenia, Greece, Israel and the UK.