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Nyandarua Banks on Theatres to Eradicate Maternal Deaths

The Nyandarua county government is banking on theatres at sub-county levels to eradicate maternal mortality cases occasioned by lack of vital services.

According to County Health Executive, Dr. John Mungai, the move is coupled with an increase in the number of health centers to ensure mothers do not travel more than five kilometers in search of skilled delivery.

Mungai noted that the creation of theatres will see emergency cases that occur during delivery handled at sub-county levels, saving mothers the agony of traveling long distances for the same.

“Complication during delivery is inevitable and it’s better to be proactive to try to come up with ways that can address the same to at least try to save mothers and the newborns,” he added.

The Executive noted that the county had so far built theatres in JM, Engineer, Manunga, Mirangine, and Ndaragwa hospitals with some set for operationalization. He said the efforts coupled with the posting of gynecologists and other doctors will help them reduce maternal deaths to zero and move the rate of skilled delivery that currently stands at 70 to 100 percent.

“Bringing a child into this world is very hard and risky and as a county government we are trying to make the process easier and safe for our pregnant mothers,” he said.

A visit to various hospitals revealed that some of the theatres were operational, others set for operationalization, and others under construction.

According to the nursing officer in charge of Ndaragwa Health center, a twin theatre that is already in place will go a long way in reducing the number of referrals to the neighbouring Laikipia County. The medic noted that they refer close to 30 mothers seeking caecilian deliveries per month.

“Last year alone we had about 569 deliveries in this facility and we referred 79 cases to other hospitals, most of them seeking caesarean delivery. Operationalization of the theater will make work easier for both the patients and the doctors at this facility,” he said.

At bamboo health center in Kipipiri Sub County, a twin theatre is under construction with the nursing officer Wanjiku Wachira saying it is in the last stages of construction and would ease their service delivery that has posed distress to the medical fraternity.

Wachira noted that they refer to Naivasha, Tigoni and Engineer hospitals about 30 women every month since their workload was too high.

Residents have however hailed the move regretting that anytime a mother comes in search of maternity services then referred to Nyahururu or Ol Kalou for theatre services is always a turn back to them.

According to National Council for Population Development (NCPD) the current Maternal Mortality Ratio in the country stands at 362 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, and the stillbirth rate of 23 deaths per 1000 live births which are far below the recommendation of 147 maternal mortality per 100,000 live births and 12 stillbirths per 1000 live births respectively.

 By Jesse Mwitwa

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