By Douglas Okoro
Abakaliki, – Mrs Augustina Otu, an official of the Ebonyi Ministry of Health, says that the government of Ebonyi is making concerted efforts to achieve a zero maternal mortality rate in the state.
Otu disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abakaliki.
She revealed that as at 2018, when the maternal mortality was last calculated following a national survey and was last updated by the National Demographic Health Survey (NDHS), the rate stood at 512 per 100,000 live births.
According to her, the state Ministry of Health and State Primary Health Care Development Agency have been making conscious efforts to see a reduction in maternal, newborn and child mortality in the state.
“This is exemplified by the establishment of the State Emergency Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Intervention Centre in 2020 which I serve as the programme manager.
“The state has embarked on activities like Emergency Transport Scheme (ETS) to reduce maternal and perinatal mortality.
“The state provided tricycles to the Local Government Areas (LGAs) as an ambulance to help transport women to the health facilities.”
She added that the United States Agency for International Development-Integrated Health Programme (USAID-IHP), in collaboration with the ministry of health and SPHCDA, had trained members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) and volunteer drivers in some selected LGAs.
“The training aims to assist in transporting mothers and children in cases of emergency to save lives in the state.
“The state has also trained health workers to help provide skilled birth attendants to reduce maternal and child mortality in the state.
“The state is working with the health partners in the state to create more access to drugs and maternal service,” Otu said.
She noted that Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi had provided access roads to most of the health facilities in the state to ease transportation challenges, stressing that the efforts were geared towards reducing maternal deaths in the state. (NAN)