By Bukar Bolori
A non-governmental organisation (NGO), Action Health Incorporated (AHI)
in collaboration with the United Nation Population Fund (UNFPA) on Friday handed over life-saving drugs, medical consumables and tricycle ambulances to Borno state government.
Items donated include lifesaving and ante-natal care drugs, medical consumables, disinfectant, 2,400 sanitary pads and 300 delivery kits among others.
Others include five fully-equipped IVM 1100 Tricycle Ambulances with detachable stretchers, oxygen cylinders, drip hangers, drug-storage boxes, resuscitating masks, breathing tubes, ambulance seats, and standard life-support hospital equipment.
Presenting the items at the Borno Medical Store, Mrs Adenike Esiet, AHI Executive Director, said that the gesture was to compliment efforts toward improving Maternal Health Care Delivery in Maiduguri Metropolitan Council, Jere, Ngala and Bama local government areas of the State.
She said: “In addition to providing these ambulances, over the next three months AHI will support the costs of procurement of medical consumables and drugs to be stationed in the tricycle ambulances, stipends for the tricycle ambulance drivers, and logistics/ambulance running costs.”
She added that the interventions are targeted towards improving reproductive, maternal, newborn and child healthcare (RMNCH), strengthening referral services as well as provision of materials and essential medicine to significantly reduce maternal mortality and morbidity.
Esiet said that it had also conducted capacity building orientation for 40 healthcare providers on emergency obstetric and newborn care and
provided orientation to 80 Tricycle ambulance drivers on the identification of pregnancy warning signs and provision of basic first aid.
She said many mothers will now be able to have easier access to Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) and other health facilities where their chances of safe deliveries are greatly increased.
She said: “Beyond this intervention, AHI will continue to work with UNFPA and the Borno State Ministry of Health to improve Maternal Health Care, especially of the most vulnerable women and adolescent girls.”
She however recalled that the World Health Organisation in one of it’s report, claimed that the Northeast region of Nigeria has the highest maternal mortality rate in the country with 1,549 deaths per 100,000 live births.
She lamented that: “Contributing factors include limited access to health facilities and lack of Basic Emergency Obstetric Care (BEmOC).”
Also speaking, Head of Office UNFPA, Chris Sabum, commended the Borno government for providing condussive environment for the humanitarian organisation to carry out its life saving support especially in liberated communities.
He said. “We have supported medical workers with Personal Protective Equipments (PPE’s), toward ensuring that frontline line workers are safe to enabled them carry out their services of protecting lives.
“UNFPA is also strengthening efforts of government toward ensuring effective medical care to the must vulnerable communities. We also ensure that survivors of Genda Based Violence get necessary treatment.”
The Executive Director, Primary Health Care Development Agency(PHCDA), Dr Aliyu Shettima, while speaking at the occasion, commended the humanitarian organisations for supporting government policies and programmes.
Shettima said that the donation would go a long way towards strengthening the integrated services of the healthcare system in the state and assured them of the judicious distribution of the items.