Anambra records 20 maternal deaths in six months


Anambra State has recorded 20 maternal deaths from nine healthcare facilities across the state between January and June 2022.

The state’s Reproductive Health Coordinator, Dr. Obianuju Okoye, disclosed this at the first maternal mortality review meeting, on Tuesday, in Awka.

Okoye said that the state established an electronic platform where hospitals in the state could record data on maternal deaths.

“From the reports on our e-platform, the state recorded 20 deaths from nine hospitals between January and June, mostly from hard-to-reach areas.

“This review meeting will help the state government to know where the problems are coming from and how to collectively address them,” she said.

Also speaking, Dr. Chinomnso Nnebu, Consultant, Community Physician, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, lamented that many pregnant women go to deliver at faith-based organisations instead of the hospitals.

“Some faith-based organisations will keep pregnant women and be praying for them instead of advising them to go to the hospital. Faith works but faith without work is dead.

“We need to educate pregnant women to stop giving birth in prayer houses because they cannot manage pregnancy complications,” he said.

Dr. George Eleje, Head of Department, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, NAUTH, urged pregnant women to register early for antenatal to prevent complications and maternal deaths.

According to him, antenatal care makes pregnancy safe and helps the woman prepare for uneventful labour and also for a good pregnancy outcome.

In his remarks, Dr. Afam Obidike, the state’s Commissioner for Health, said that the meeting was to review the causes of maternal deaths in the state and proffer solutions to put an end to deaths.

Obidike described maternal mortality or pregnancy-related death as the death of a woman during pregnancy or within one year of pregnancy.

He said that Gov. Charles Soludo’s led-administration was adopting a holistic approach to end maternal mortality, in partnership with the private healthcare sector which offered 70 per cent of health services.

“There are cases where a pregnant woman goes to primary healthcare centres and when things become difficult, there is nowhere else to go. Hence we are working on strengthening the referral system too.

“If we put things right, we are ensuring the safety of the next woman that will deliver. Gradually we will reduce maternal mortality rate as much as possible in the state,” Obidike said. 



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