By Yinka Kolawole in Osogbo
Nigeria, in the past few years has experienced some deterioration in infant and maternal mortality, with infant death rates evaluated at 103 per 1000 in 2016 was measured at just 87 in 1990.
Again, a joint report (Trends in Maternal Mortality: 1990 to 2015 by WHO, UNICEF, World Bank and United Nations Population Fund) estimates that Nigeria has approximately 58,000 maternal deaths, accounting for 19 per cent globally.
Put in simpler terms, an average of 814 women die in every 100,000 live births.
This can be partly explained by the persisting low numbers of births occurring in health facilities and the low number of births attended by trained healthcare service providers.
It is therefore apparent through the elevated mortality rates that the lack of access to or use of quality healthcare delivery services is an issue of immense importance in Nigeria.
In a bid to mitigate this burden therefore, governments, international organisations and good spirited individuals in the society have put in place concerted efforts in providing requisite infrastructures and equipment needed for sustainable quality healthcare delivery in the country, which undoubtedly have overarching effects on economic development in the country.
Evident among these numerous efforts of partnership and support is the donation of medical equipment and other materials to the Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa – one of the six hospital units of the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospitals Complex, Ile-Ife.
The hospital received over a thousand boxes/packages, and most notable among the donated equipment were Anaesthetic, Ultrasound, ECG, CPAP machines; incubators; radiant warmer; phototherapy units; laryngoscopes; patient, infant and fetal monitors; adult and infant scales; ventilator; autoclave; examination tables; stretchers; wheel chairs, to mention just a few.
The donation was a joint effort of the Federal Ministry of Health Nigeria, Coca Cola West Africa and MedShare, Atlanta, Georgia USA, to help address maternal and infant mortality in the country.
This was made known to the public by the Chief Medical Director, Prof. Victor Adetiloye during the official commissioning of the newly refurbished main entrance of the Wesley Guild Hospital, Ilesa.
The main entrance of the hospital now has a new gate, which was donated in memory of Lady Abigail Olayemi Fadahunsi (Nee Awodiya) by her children.
In his remarks, the CMD stated that about a year ago, Coca Cola West Africa visited the hospital to conduct needs assessment on areas to help improve the facilities in the hospital, and was surprised at the level of response it got from the organisation.
He therefore appreciated the organisation and the Federal Ministry of Health for facilitating the laudable initiative.
He equally acknowledged the kind gestures exhibited by the Ife and Ijesa people in contributing their quota to the development of the hospital over the years through several financial and infrastructural donations.