In the bid to stop child mortality, a USA based Medical Team called ‘Inspire Hope Foundation’ ( IHF ) led by Nigeria born Dr Chinyere Anyaogu and the Abia State Adviser to the governor on Diaspora Matters and Special Duties, Dr Ngozi Ogbonna-Erondu, have conducted a one day Train-The-Trainer workshop tagged “Helping Babies Breathe” for Abia health workers selected from the state 17 LGAs.
The state Director of National Orientation Agency ( NOA), Dr Lady Ngozi Okechukwu and the Executive Secretary of the State Primary Health Development Agency ( SPHDA), Dr Chinagozi Adindu also collaborated in training the health workers not only on how to manage babies during and after their birth but to be able to thereafter, train others in turn.
The workshop which was held at the Women Development Center Umuahia, featured lectures and discussions by the medical experts led by Dr Anyaogu on other salient issues on the subject matter, top of which were demonstrations of how health workers should handle babies during and after birth especially ensure that the babies breathe well.
A resource person and Neonatologist from the University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Dr Ikechukwu Okonkwo stated that if babies do not breathe well, they would have slim chances of survival, stressing that in view of Nigeria’s second position ranking in global neonatal figure and pre-birth death, Abia State government ought to address the challenge and step up her anti child mortality, curbing efforts in addition to her other interventions in the health sector.
Another resource person and Consultant from the Federal Medical Center, Asaba, Delta State, professor Angela Okolo, had stated that ideally, a baby should not be admitted in a medical facility in the absence of or without the mother.
Speaking, the Executive Secretary of Abia State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, Dr Chinagozi Adindu
said that the state governor Dr Okezie Ikpeazu had effected numerous health interventions to improve the healthcare of Abians including recently commissioning a modern equipped Children hospital at Umuahia with plans to replicate same in the other two senatorial districts of the state.
He therefore charged the health workers to, as they attend to babies, do all the needful to help them breathe well indicating that the training would be extended beyond the state capital.
Declaring the workshop open at the Women Development Center, the state Health Commissioner, Dr Joe Osuji represented by the ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Franca Ekwuribe, said that that state government provided the enabling environment for the IHF Medical Team of experts from USA and those from outside Abia State to conduct the training and enjoined the Health Worker- Trainees to be more passionate as they apply the knowledge acquired in their work to facilitate the reduction of child mortality rate.
The NOA Director (Lady Okechukwu) who decried the reported level of child mortality said that the training was to enable the health workers to be more active in the drive to reduce child mortality.
She tasked Nigerians at home and in the diaspora to partner government to sustain child mortality eradication efforts and commended the Inspire Hope Foundation Medical Team and other Resource Persons for coming to Nigeria and Abia state for the event,despite the prevailing odds and the Abia State Diaspora Office for the role it played in actualizing the training.