EASTERN province has continued to record a reduction in maternal deaths. Speaking during an indaba with traditional leaders across the province, Acting Provincial Heath Director Francis Mubanga said 96 deaths were recorded in 2018, 71 in 2019 and 69 last year.
Dr Mubanga attributed the reduction in the number women dying during child birth to various interventions government is implementing including the active involvement of traditional in the fight. “The province carried out interventions in reducing maternal deaths including capacity building in skills of health workers, working with traditional leaders, improved referral systems, employed more nurses, given out long term family planning and carried out comprehensive abortion trainings,” he said.
He however registered his regret that the province has this year already recorded one community maternal death. ““The province has from January to April this year recorded 20 maternal deaths. What is more disturbing is that one of these deaths was a community one,” he explained.
Dr Mubanga said he was hopeful that the indaba with traditional leaders will help come up with more strategies that will ensure the province does not record any more community deaths. He thanked the chiefs for their efforts and contributions towards maternal health.
The medical officer also commended partners like Marie Stopes and IPAS for coming on board. And the host District Commissioner, Velenasi Moyo called on chiefs who are not implementing localized interventions like fining people who book late for ante natal, and unsupportive partners, to consider introducing such measures in their respective chiefdoms.
She said the district is recording reduced maternal deaths due to such supplementary interventions. “Government has put up a fight against maternal deaths and its contributing factors. It us for this reason that we call on all stakeholders like our traditional leaders to devise other strategies in tackling this issue,” she said.
The DC also added that the introduction of one stop centers has helped reduce the occurrences of maternal deaths in the district as clients are able to access different services in one place. “Government has been consistent in putting in adequate measures like one stop centers to help our women and girls. And this is helping in ensuring no one dies while giving life,” she added.- ZANIS