The Delta State Government has reiterated its commitment to the reduction of deaths of maternal and pre-natal deaths – death of pregnant women and deaths of children between 28 weeks in the womb and seven days after delivery to the barest minimum.
The Delta State Commissioner for health Dr. Nicholas Azinge stated this at the opening ceremony of the 2-days Sensitization and Institutionalization of Maternal and Pre-natal Death Surveillance and Response at Local Government Level Training held at Nelrose Hotel, Asaba.
He said the training would boost the capacity of the participants on how to determine the maternal and pre-natal deaths occurring in the Primary Health Centres and their causes with the aim of reducing the preventable diseases that are responsible for the deaths.
Dr. Azinge revealed that Delta State had been in the forefront of the implementation of the Maternal and Pre-natal Death Surveillance and Response process in Nigeria as it did earlier with the Maternal Death Review process, which was inaugurated in March,2014 and made tremendous impact locally and nationally.
According to him the Maternal and Pre-natal Death Surveillance and Response Steering Committee which was inaugurated in July 2016 metamorphosed from the Maternal Death Review had been functional and also received support from the World Health Organization and UNICEF which assisted in the State to step down the process to the Zonal/Facility level.
The Commissioner explained that there are presently 13 Zonal/Facility Maternal and Perinatal Death Surveillance and Response Committee in the State including the Federal Medical Centre, Asaba which covers all the State’s secondary and tertiary health facility reporting all Maternal and Perinatal Deaths since April this year. The reporting rate has reached 100% by May this year though with mortalities being minimal.
Arising from the identified recurring factors reviewed from the few reported cases, proposals for collaboration with the State Contributory Health Insurance Scheme were put forward to help indigent women and children and also step down the Maternal and Perinatal Death Surveillance and Response process to the Local Government Level.
Earlier, Dr. Winful Orieke, Executive Officer, State Primary Health Care Development Agencies, in his welcome address stated that the Primary Health Centres are the foundation for health care delivery in the State and the Country at large and a function one would no doubt improve on the health indexes in the State.
He urged the participants not to limit their activities to the Primary Health Centres alone but also reach out to the traditional birth attendants so as to get a holistic grip of the populace.
Goodwill massages were received from the functioning Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Charles Ofili and Director, Primary Health Care Centre, Local Government Service Commission, Mrs. C. Oyem.