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Maternal health care paramount, says doctor

Good preparation is a major factor for success in all life’s endeavours. Just like a farmer needs to till the land in preparation for planting, so does a woman need to ensure her body is fit to carry a healthy pregnancy to full term.

A woman can prepare for a healthy pregnancy by observing a healthy lifestyle and accessing maternal health care right through pregnancy to delivery and even after the baby is born.

Speaking to KNA at his office in Nyambene Clinic & Nursing home, Igembe Central, Dr Thiakunu Mwirabua, said the concept of maternal health care has been there since time immemorial whereby traditional birth attendants took care of pregnant women and ensured safe delivery.

Dr Thiakunu advised that a woman should consult a gynaecologist or obstetrician immediately she plans to have a baby so that conditions like diabetes, hypertension and asthma that interfere with a healthy pregnancy could be detected and treated.

He also noted that conditions like haemorrhage during and even after pregnancy could also be managed to guarantee the health and safety of both mother and baby.

Dr Thiakunu observed that birth complications such as obstructed labour during delivery could be prevented with proper and timely interventions and this was possible with regular maternal check-up.

He further said that women are educated on what to do to prepare for their baby’s arrival including what to pack and carry to hospital when she gets into labour.

This preparation reduces both maternal and infant mortality for instance if the woman has a heart disease, the doctor is able to manage the condition and ensure optimum care for both her and the baby.

Dr Thiakunu appreciated both electronic and print media for actively being involved in addressing and disseminating health care issues and bringing information close to the people to enlighten them about their health needs compared to the past.

“The electronic media including vernacular radio stations have particularly played a great role of enlightening people on their health awareness since those in rural areas are able to understand the health education transmitted in their language better,” opined the doctor.

He also advised the pregnant teenagers who shy away from seeking maternal health care to do so since they were the ones who needed more counselling as opposed to older women.

Dr Thiakunu advised his counterparts in the public health amenities to plead with the government to ensure the facilities are well equipped medically so that those who cannot afford to attend private facilities could be well served there.

“The government may not know some of those challenges at these public facilities unless advised by those who handle patients and deliver health services there,” he noted.

By Kamanja Maeria

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