05/03/2010 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Sierra Leone Mothers And Children Get Free Health Care

Pregnant women, breast-feeding mothers and children under five will receive free health care in Sierra Leone as of April 27, the country's Independence Day, SOS Children's Villages reports.

The country has the world's highest child mortality rate.

For every 100,000 live births in the west African nation, as many as 1,800 women die, according to UN Children's Fund (UNICEF). And every year another half a million pregnant women die each year becaues they can't access healthcare. Others have been imprisoned in clinics, because they cannot pay doctors' fees.

SOS Children's Villages expressed concern that with only about 170 doctors for more than 5 million people, making the free service work will be difficult.

To learn more about the issues facing Sierra Leone's health care system and mothers and children who need care, visit