The Bayelsa State Government and the Society of Gynaecology and Obstetrics, the umbrella professional organisation of gynaecologists and obstetricians have agreed to partner on the issue of the planned reduction of the high infant and maternal mortality rate in the state.
The State Government and the leadership of SOGON entered into the partnership, when the National President, Prof. Oluwarotimi Akinola, led top officials of the society, on a courtesy visit to the Governor, Honourable Henry Seriake Dickson, in Yenagoa, on Wednesday.
A statement by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media Relations, Mr. Fidelis Soriwei, quoted Honourable Dickson as having said that, the issue of the reduction of infant and maternal mortality rate had been given serious attention under his leadership.
He said that, the state was determined to make targeted efforts to improve the record of the mortality rate irrespective of available statistics on the issue.
The governor commended the members of SOGON for their dedication to duty and commitment to the preservation of human lives.
The Governor stressed that the state government owed the populace the provision of healthcare facilities that could be easily accessed and afforded by the people.
Honourable Dickson explained that, the quest to respond to the health needs of the people inspired his administration to establish “a world class diagnostic centre, a drugmart, specialist hospitals, local government referral centres and the multiple community hospitals at the grassroots level of the state.”
He directed the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Ebitimitula Etebu, to design a scheme to reduce delivery cost and also monitor mother and child before and after childbirth.
The Governor called on donor agencies to also partner with the state government in the quest to reduce infant and maternal mortality.
His words: “This issue of infant and maternal health and reducing the mortality rate is critical. Whatever the statistics shows, I want a situation where by the end of this year, precisely in 6 months’ time, when you will come back to interact with me, not only would we have succeeded in reducing the infant and maternal mortality rate in Bayelsa.”
“I want the Bayelsa rate to be the lowest in the federation which is why we are building the best of health facilities across the state.
“I have already instructed the Commissioner for Health to devise a special scheme within the confines of the Health Insurance System that will incentivize our pregnant and nursing mothers to register and be captured.”
“I want a situation where every woman who gets pregnant is captured within the first three months for us to know where she lives, what becomes of her pregnancy and we will support her to deliver safely and monitor the health of both mother and child.”
In his remarks, the President of SOGON, Professor Akinola, said that he led his team of obstetricians and gynecologists to visit the state to contribute to the reduction of the high infant/maternal mortality rate in the state
He commended the state for the effective measures put in place to identify, arrest and control the recent outbreak of the Monkey pox disease in the state.