Saturday, November 2, 2013

A Host of Challenges Hinder Delivery of Life-Saving Services for Pregnant Women in Mityana


 By Senfuka Samuel
bsenfuka@gmail.com

Ruth showing a lamp she uses during delivery of mothers at
her health centre
Ruth is a #midwife at Bulera health centre III a rural health centre in Mityana district, central Uganda.
Despite the challenges she narrated to us during assessment of basic emergency obstetric and newborn care services at her facility Ruth still puts on a smile because she loves her profession as a #midwife. Many times she delivers mothers at night using the kerosene lamp or her mobile telephone torch. "My only delivery instrument set lacks key instruments like episiotomy scissor, cord scissor, forceps. I always improvise. We only have rain harvested water at the facility. During dry season we pay someone to fetch for us from the community well which is away from here. Attendants have to fetch their own water for the women in labor or pay the same person to fetch for them." Ruth added that: "Some mothers/women come without any attendant and a single coin but as a midwife you have to ensure that she has a safe delivery. If there is a complication we refer to Mityana hospital but transport is a big challenge.     
Non-functional Blood Pressure Machine at
Bulera HC III
Mothers have to look and pay for their transport but some of them do not come with money. I have paid transport for some of the mothers. If I were a president I would ensure that health centres are well equipped to save the mothers"
The blood pressure machine for maternity unit at Bulera HC III has been non-functional for over a year due to lack of batteries! This means with the focused antenatal care a midwife can not check the pressure of a pregnant woman or those in labor. They diagnose by symptoms and observation! Studies show that 8% of all maternal deaths in Uganda are caused by pre-eclampsia and eclampsia hence not checking                                                                                     the pressure of pregnant mothers can be disastrous.
The government should ensure that sufficient funds are allocated to meet such simple but high impact means of saving the lives of thousands of mothers in Uganda - #ActNowToSaveMothers


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