Women of Midoina in Kilifi County’s Bamba Ward momentarily forgot about the crippling drought currently ravaging the area to celebrate the construction of a new maternity wing signaling the end of home deliveries without sound medical care.
Midoina is among the regions hit hard by the ravaging drought that has frustrated Bamba residents for the last 2 years with malnutrition rate recording high in babies.
Speaking after the Launch at Midoina, a beneficiary of Midoina Maternity, Priscah Bahati, said dealing with maternal complications has been tormenting mothers adding to the prolonged dry weather conditions that has devastated the economic and health situation of residents in the region.
Bahati said the facility is a blessing to many mothers of her kind who have dark experiences of delivering at home due to distant proximity to maternal services.
“We have experienced many challenges as mothers in this community living in a region far away from maternal facilities. Before giving birth to this child I am carrying at Midoina Maternity Wing, I delivered my babies at home or en route as I desperately tried to get to a hospital several kilometers from my home. Today I am so happy to say that fellow mothers in this region now have an opportunity to access maternal services brought to us at a close proximity,” Bahati said holding her newborn.
Mary Adega, a mother who gave birth to her new born at Midoina commended the new facility while recalling how torturous it has been for mothers in the region who opted to deliver babies at home due to limited access to maternal health care.
“We really appreciate this new maternity facility built for us mothers of Midoina because in the past, we used to go as far as Bamba to seek maternal services and sometimes just give birth at home. We have been going through a lot without a facility like this within our access. Even the baby am holding now I delivered right here at Midoina and I can assure you that am very happy,” Adega said.
“Today we take pride in this facility considering the challenges we have undergone in bringing forth new lives without proper care like other mothers out there. This facility is going to save lives. I am calling upon the government, well-wishers and non-governmental organizations to continue helping us because the drought situation in this region is unbearable,” added Karembo Charo from Kazole village in Midoina.
Speaking to the media outside the launched Midoina Maternity Wing, the Nursing Officer in charge of the amenity, Isaack Karisa, lauded the facility while regretting the challenges his medical team and the community underwent in the past due to lack of a maternity section within.
“Before the construction of this maternity wing, we were experiencing a lot of challenges as a facility and community level. We have always referred expectant mothers to other hospitals which have maternity services most of which are very far from Midoina.
Karisa urged mothers to utilize this facility in order to save lives and avoid post-delivery complications.
“I am calling upon the mothers in this community to seek maternal services including antenatal, childbirth and postnatal care from the facility so as to reduce the risk of complications that sometimes lead to loss of lives. We have had two stillbirths this year because of lack of equipment that would have helped in saving the lives of the lost babies,” Karisa said.
In an interview with KNA during the facility’s launch, World Vision Project Coordinator for Bamba Mother-2-Mother project,t Eunice Ako, said the community has had enormous challenges in accessing safe delivery and neonatal health care services, a factor that pushed her organization to fill the gap.
Ako said there was a tremendous need to come up with a solution to easy access of maternal-child health care and improve the nutrition in the region besides the drought.
“Mothers have had to walk long distances like 10 kilometers to reach health facilities making it very difficult especially when a mother is in labor and worse, with the dry weather condition. We saw the need to bring a maternity facility at Midoina so that the mothers can find a safe place to have children that are healthy, deliver babies in a good environment and to encourage other mothers to improve the utilization of maternal-child health facility,” she said.
Kilifi County Executive Member for Health, Charles Dadu, who did the official launch, lauded World Vision for facilitating the improvement of healthcare maternal infrastructure and called on other support organizations to cheap in and improve the health status of communities in remote parts of Kilifi.
By Treeza Auma and Harrison Yeri