Public Health Ministry launches $1.6B Project to improve Maternal and Child Health

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The Ministry of Public Health has launched a project supporting an in-depth revision of all guidelines, protocols, and strategies related to the health of women of reproductive age and extending to pregnancy, delivery, emergency care, and postpartum challenges.

The Maternal and Child Health Improvement Project was launched yesterday (Thursday, March 16, 2017) to the tune of $1.6B.

The programme also envisages a focus on specific needs of adolescents, men and indigenous peoples.

According to the Ministry, maternal mortality rates is estimated at 121/100,000 live births and infant mortality rates estimated at 22/1000 live births. Subject Minister, Volda Lawrence is worried about Guyana’s continued high rates of maternal and infant mortality and said reversing those trends cannot be the sole responsibility of her Ministry.

Minister Volda Lawrence

The IDB, PAHO/WHO, USAID, UNICEF and the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) have stood out as major partners backing the local public health sector in the last decade “supporting health initiatives aimed at enhancing the delivery of primary health care to our people,” Lawrence said.

She said; nevertheless, the health sector challenges have remained daunting. “At present, there exist countless constraints that militate against the effective operations of this unit and result in the demise of our mothers and infants. This phenomenon, I want to reiterate, undermines our national health priorities and depletes our national human resource assets,” the Minister said.

Dr Ertenisa Hamilton, MCH Director (ag)

The US$8M IDB support will be used to strengthen reproductive, maternal and neonatal health; strengthen the healthcare network and invested in administration and evaluation, Dr Ertenisa Hamilton, MCH Director (Ag) told participants.

The project also intends to provide quality reproductive, maternal and neonatal care; strengthen the supply chain for contraceptive methods and drugs and blood products. Additionally, all processes relating to planning, procurement, storage, distribution, monitoring and evaluation, new management practices will become time sensitive.

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