FG, Lagos Partner to Combat Maternal, Newborn Mortality

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Martins Ifijeh

As part of plans to address Nigeria’s poor maternal and child health issues, the federal government and the Lagos State government recently launched a 149-bed Mother and Child Centre (MCC) at the Igando General Hospital.

Speaking during the official launch, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Princess Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire said the facility was geared towards promoting the health of mothers and children, reducing maternal and child mortality and improving the state’s health indices.

The three-floor facility, named Dr Aisha Buhari Mother and Child Centre, has two operating theatres, recovery rooms, sterilisation room, delivery room, consultation rooms, private and general wards, scanning room, side laboratory rooms, reception area, lounge, nurses room and station, doctor call rooms, scrub room and a board room.

“Inside the centre are ultra-modern equipment that will aid the prompt delivery of maternal and child care services, this includes; patient monitors with EC02, Suction machine double jar, ultra-scan machines, oxygen generating machine, vacuum extractor delivery set, among others.

“Our mandate is to provide horizontal and vertical intergovernmental coordination; multi-stakeholder partnership and resource mobilisation, as well as advocacy and strategic communications for SDGs in Nigeria.

“We have since recognised that the SDGs cannot be achieved through stand-alone projects and programmes, hence, we are supporting the states, particularly Lagos, through the instrument of the Conditional Grant Scheme, CGS, to increase their investments in key SDGs priority areas, such as health, education and water,” she said.

Wife of the President, Aisha Buhari, who was represented by Mrs Ajoh Sanni, called for a more concerted effort from the private sector to support the government in its efforts at combating the challenge of maternal mortality rates in the country.

She said: “I believe the facility will go a long way in reducing the spate of maternal and child mortality in our country.

“ I, therefore, call for a more concerted effort to ensure a reduction in maternal and child mortality, especially through more investment in the health by privilege individual and private sectors, in order to complement what government is doing in the sector.”

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, while commending the gesture of the federal government for donating the facility, said: “We are very grateful to the federal government to have produced this extra capacity facility for us in our endeavour to look after mothers and children assuring that it would be put into judicious use for the benefit of mothers and children.

“We need to ensure accessible, affordable health service as well as education, efficient and effective transport system to our people. It’s only when we are able to achieve all these and more, we will take the people out of poverty.”

Earlier, the state Commissioner for Health, Prof Akin Abayomi said the state has not only declared zero tolerance on potholes and power outages, but also on unnecessary deaths among pregnant mothers and children.

He explained that the Alimosho General Hospital and MCC serve the 3.5 million people of Alimosho and a total of 6 million from surrounding areas, which if put together is bigger than many cities and even some countries in Africa and around the world.

“The hospital attends to an average of 45,000 patients a month across 14 different clinics and admits over 4,000 patients per year.

“It sees 14,000 pregnant mothers and children per month and an average of 250 babies are born every month. In 2018 it performed 1,300 caesarean sections,” Abayomi stated.