As the world marks the World Patient Safety Day, Bayelsa State government has advised pregnant women in the state to receive professional care from health facilities during child birth in order to reduce maternal and new born mortality.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Pabara Newton Igwele, gave the advice in Yenagoa on Friday during a press briefing to mark the day which has as its theme, “Safe Maternal and Newborn Care”.
Igwele noted that according to World Health Organization (WHO) statistics, approximately 810 women die every day from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth while Nigeria accounts for 14% of those deaths.
He said most mothers die from obstetric hemorrhage, sepsis from prolonged labour, eclampsia and anemia while most children die of malnutrition, prematurity, malaria, infections, birth asphyxia, late diagnosis of infant HIV infection and Pneumonia.
Igwele noted that such complications can be avoided if expectant mothers receive the right care, and called on medical professionals to be kind to these women and other patients in their care.
The Health Commissioner added that the state government will continue to improve health care in the state, as the School of Nursing was recently upgraded to a college and the School of Community Midwifery is under construction in Sampou, Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government Area of the state.
The Permanent Secretary, Dr. Wisdom Ebiye Sawyer in his remarks advised pregnant women against registering for antenatal in hospitals and then going to traditional birth attendants when it is time to give birth.
He said most of them cannot handle complications when they arise, therefore the women should always seek quality care at the various health facilities across the state.
The Chairman, Bayelsa State Primary Health Care Board, Hon. Mrs. Victoria Denenu said the day brings to the consciousness that patient safety is a priority, and health professionals should treat it as such.
Speaking on behalf of medical professional bodies in the state, the Chairman, Nigerian Medical Association Bayelsa State Chapter, Dr. Ngowari Torunana said the association will continue to support government’s efforts in maternal and child care, and called on the government to also meet the needs of the associations.
Implementing partners such as the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Women and Children Hope Alive Development Foundation (WOCHAF) and the World Health Organization, (WHO) all added their voice to the campaign, saying they will continue to do more to support the state’s response.
The campaign began with a roadwalk which took off at the State Emergency Routine Immunization Coordination Centre (SERICC), beside Road Safety office and culminated at the state Secretariat.