In Nigeria, 1 in 20 women stands the risk of dying during pregnancy, childbirth, and postpartum/post I abortion whereas in the most developed countries, the lifetime risk is 1 in 4900. WHO reports reveal that 145 Nigerian women die in childbirth every day thereby leaving Nigeria to rank second globally in the number of maternal deaths.
Health Emergency Initiative (HEI) is a health-oriented non-profit organisation that identifies with WHO goals of improving maternal healthcare. So far, we have in our records 42 maternal cases of medical interventions. Thereby contributing to the reduction of maternal mortality in Nigeria.
For instance, a woman needed funds for child delivery at one of the public hospitals in Lagos state and the social worker reached out to HEI. Within the span of 2 hours, HEI responded with the provision of funds and the woman safely delivered a baby girl.
Reports over the years has revealed that the leading contributory factors of maternal deaths include
- Inadequate human resource for health
- Delay in seeking care
- Inadequate equipment
- Lack of ambulance transportation
- Delay in referrals services.
Meanwhile, the vast majority of these maternal deaths are preventable and HEI as an organisation that works to prevent needless deaths looks forward to helping in the reduction of maternal morbidity in Nigeria. Here are some measures that can be explored to enhancing reduction of maternal morbidity in Nigeria:
Interventions Involving Behavioural Change
Advocacy and enhancing healthy behaviours such as eating a healthy diet; limiting or avoiding alcohol consumption; stopping smoking; using a mosquito net to protect against malaria; arranging for a skilled birth attendant during labor and delivery; and recognizing and acting promptly on signs of a complicated delivery
Many antenatal interventions have been shown to reduce neonatal morbidity and mortality.
There is a need for widespread maternal malnutrition because malnourished mothers are at increased risk for complications and death during pregnancy and childbirth.
Skilled Attendance at Childbirth
And of course, to achieving a significant reduction in maternal mortality, there is a need to skilful services from the birth attendant during delivery and access to higher level obstetric care in the event of complications.
Protecting and promoting the health of women is crucial to health and development, not only for the citizens of today but also for those of future generations.
Support HEI, let’s do more to help in the reduction of maternal mortality and morbidity in Nigeria.