Many pregnant women have had remote antenatal appointments during the pandemic [Reuters/Callaghan O’Hare]

The day Sarmila Shrestha felt her baby was not moving, Nepal had just gone into lockdown. She was nine months pregnant and when she visited the hospital they told her she had to take a test for COVID-19 before she could be admitted.

“We were so confused about what to do next,” she said. When she was finally permitted to enter, the overwhelmed staff did not pay attention to her concerns and there were constant delays. Shrestha went into labour but her baby was stillborn.

“I was heartbroken,” she said. “My baby could have been alive if the service was done on time.”

Stillbirth – which is the loss of

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