May 19, 2024

A’Ibom govt pledges to tackle maternal mortality/morbidity

A’Ibom govt pledges to tackle maternal mortality/morbidity

…Appreciates SFH over intervention to improve women reproductive health

As implementers hail DISC project performance in A’Ibom

By Chioma Onuegbu Uyo

Akwa Ibom State Government has thanked the Society for Family Health, SFH, for partnering it in actualising intervention Programme aimed at improving sexual and reproductive health for women in the state.

The Commissioner for Health, Professor Augustine Umoh gave the thanks in his opening remarks   at a meeting on “Dissemination of Akwa Ibom Family Planning/ Depo Medroxy Progesterone Acetate – SubCutaneously (DMPA-SC) performance, organised weekend in Uyo by SFH in collaboration with the state government.

Professor Umoh who was represented by the Director Public health Services, Dr Etop Antia, pledged State Government’s readiness and willingness to build on the structures and successes of SFH’s Delivering  Innovation in Self- Care (DISC) project to ensure its sustainability.

 His words, “It is a great pleasure that we are gathered here today to reflect on the achievements of the Delivering Innovation in Self-Care (DISC), project implemented by Society for Family Health to improve sexual and reproductive health amongst our women and girls.

“I want to say thank you to the Society for Family Health for actualizing the self-care intervention for our women, giving them autonomy over reproductive health. We wish for more life-changing and impactful interventions going forward.

 “Investment in the Reproductive sector cannot be over-emphasized as the nation is saddled with the responsibility of reducing maternal mortality and morbidity which is on a high rate. In our state maternal mortality and morbidity rate stands at 520 per 100,000.

“This necessitated the need for strategic interventions to curb the occurring incidence due to unplanned, too frequent, and too many pregnancies which could have been avoided through awareness creation, and access to quality and affordable health care services”

 The Commissioner stressed that the state Ministry of Health remained committed to reducing maternal mortality and mobidity especially at the grassroots in line with the goals of the ARISE Agenda of the current administration.

 ” My hope and prayer is that what we are going to do here today will stand the test of time. And we will replicate this project in the hard- to reach areas especially the coastal local government areas “, Umoh assured.

In her remarks,  Executive Secretary Akwa Ibom State Primary Health Care Development Agency, (AKSPHCDA), Dr (Mrs) Eno Attah, said the State would ensure that  every woman has access to all services that gives her the choice to family planning.

She appreciated implementing partners of DMPA-SC in the state stressing,” This project where women can administer Family Planning method themselves is very very important. So thank you very much for the hardwork”

Giving overview of the DISC project,Dr Oluwaseun Adeleke, Senior Learning Advisor Society for Family Health, appreciated the state government for its support, and for creating the enabling environment that made it possible for them to record success in the state within the short period of 21 months.

 Dr Adeleke pointed out that most women who die during pregnancy was as a result of problem of lack of access to quality healthcare,  stressing that that’s why DISC project supports women to have autonomy and exercise control over their sexual reproductive health right more effectively.

He added that one key option that Akwa Ibom need to increase its contraceptives dependency rate “is for women of reproductive age to have access to contraceptives like the DMPA- SC Self-Inject(SI) method. No woman should die of pregnancy; it is not a sickness”

On her part, the State Coordinator family Planning , Mrs Enobong Eshiet, said though the project was implemented in 5  out of 31LGAs in the state, it has been cascaded to  other 26 Local Government Areas.

She noted that all the 5 LGAs experienced tremendous increase in Self- Inject adoption and showed wide acceptance of DMPA-SC method.

She listed the objectives of the SFH Transition meeting to include, State institutionalization of concept and goals including PHC strengthening for continued Self-Inject (SI) practices and possible State level scale up as well as Community perception, acceptance a d strategy for SI continuation and uptake across diverse groups.

“Society for Family Health has supported in so many areas. Regarding the Self- Care intervention of family planning and services, we have achieved so much because of their support within the of 21 months. The total number of women of reproductive age reached is 45,284”, Eshiet said.

Some beneficiaries of the Family Planning project who testified at the meeting said they didn’t experience any side effects and that it saves time and money as well as reduce the risks traveling long distances for consultations.