Expert tasks Northern Govts on postpartum haemorrhage among women in the region

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By JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON, Kaduna.
Director Maternal Newborn and Child Health (MNCH2), Dr. Salamatu Kolo has appealed to Northern governments to encourage the use of misoprostol to prevent postpartum haemorrhage among women during childbirth.
Kolo made the call during a presentation at a workshop on National Guidelines for community distribution of misoprotol in Kaduna.
The Workshop is being organised by an NGO, Population and Reproductive Health Initiative (PRHI) with the theme: That our mothers live: fighting postpartum haemorrhage at home births: misoprostol, the game changer.
Kolo said the Northern region bore the highest burden of maternal deaths in the country, with the North West, accounting to over 50 per cent of recorded cases.
According to her, misoprostol is an effective uterotonic drug heat stable, inexpensive and easy to use pill, which is taken orally after child birth.
The health official noted that the drug is effective for both prevention and treatment of haemorrhage.
“It provides a unique opportunity to improve maternal health and accelerate equity in access to life saving drugs for maternal health.
“Misoprostol has the potential to transform the management of post-partum haemorrhage, both at the health facility level and within communities, by allowing women to administer the drug themselves.
“When taken immediately and appropriately after child delivery, it can reduce the risk of postpartum haemorrhage by between 24 to 47 per cent.
On his part, Prof. Oladapo Shittu, Coordinator, PRHI said the workshop was organised to equip health officials in northern region with various skills to save the lives of women during child birth.
Shittu said the effort aimed at providing life saving medication to address the high burden of maternal mortality as a result of prevalent home births in the northern region.
He said based on outcome of feasibility studies, the NGO had embarked on the distribution of misoprostol drugs to women in some communities in the region to prevent excessive bleeding at childbirth at home.
“Not only has this study continued to save and protect women from unnecessary deaths, its outcome prompted the Federal Government and WHO to change the previous policy, restricting the use of misoprostol to health facilities and skilled birth attendants,” Shittu said.

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