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Lagos deploys strategies to tackle maternal mortality

17 February 2014, 12:46

Lagos - Dr Jide Idris, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, on Sunday said that Maternal and Child Mortality Reduction (MCMR) strategies employed by the state government were yielding dividends.

According to a statement issued in Lagos  by the state’s Ministry of Health, Idris said that MCMR strategies were fashioned toward addressing specific causes of maternal and child mortality.

He said that since the commencement of the MCMR programme in October  2012, key indicators showed that the strategies were yielding results.

“We have been collecting data to see how far we have gone and if there is a need for us to amend or change our strategies.

“There has been increase in ante-natal attendance, increase in deliveries and increase in patronage of child survival interventions like immunisation against childhood killer diseases.

“Also, we discovered an increase in women accessing family planning services,” he said.

Idris also admitted that there were some delays in seeking assistance and accessing qualitative care for pregnant women and children,

He identified public enlightenment and infrastructure as areas that needed to be addressed in the MCMR design.

“Delay in seeking appropriate medical help for obstetric emergencies for reasons of cost.

“Lack of recognition of an emergency and lack of access to information and gender inequity, delay in reaching an appropriate health facility for reasons of distance, infrastructure and transport;

"Delay in receiving adequate care because of sub-optimal complement of human resources, inadequate utilities such as electricity, water and unavailability of medical supplies are critical factors,” he said.

Idris said that here were plans for  a renewed  health advocacy and sensitisation campaigns, especially in communities where  maternal and child health indices were not encouraging.

According to him, town hall meetings have been scheduled for the 20 local government areas with Ajeromi Local Government Area serving as take-off point.    

On infrastructural development, the commissioner said that the state government had commenced the construction of 10 Maternal and Child Centres (MCCs) at strategic areas.

He said that seven had been completed and had commenced operations, adding that the remaining three were at various stages of completion.

Idris  also said that the state government procured and distributed 15 000 delivery packs called ‘mama kits’ to attract pregnant women to the primary health care facilities for ante-natal care.

“Drugs required for essential obstetric care in primary and secondary health facilities have been purchased and distributed to health facilities.

“Equipment of operation of blood bank services in the secondary health facilities in the state have also been purchased and distributed.

“Our staff   have also been trained on different aspects of emergency obstetric care and newborn care," he  said.

-  NAN

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