Health stakeholders urged to deal with premature births conundrum

Bungoma County First Lady Caroline Wangamati giving out baby carriers
Bungoma County First Lady Caroline Wangamati giving out baby carriers

Bungoma County first lady Caroline Wangamati called upon stakeholders in the health sector to work together towards eradicating deaths that are as a result of premature births saying the children have to live.

In her keynote speech during the commemoration of world prematurity day held at Kenya Medical Training College ground in Bungoma the first lady said she went through the same experience as all her three children were born prematurely but managed to survive.

She said with the introduction of Kangaroo mother care many mothers who are delivering prematurely are able to take care of their children with help of guidance from health practitioners.

However, she called upon the mothers to ensure their children are immunized on time during the various ages they attain saying it will be disheartening to lose a life of a child to a disease that could have been prevented if the child could have been immunized.

She further promised to organize a meeting of community health workers with the Governor to talk about issues affecting them, saying being at the grass root level, they play a big role in ensuring residents are sensitized and access health services.

Bungoma County Medical Services Director Dr. Sylvester Mutoro expressed his concern on the statistics saying in the world fifteen million premature births are recorded and one million children end up dying due to the complications and many are recorded in Africa.

He added that in Kenya, two hundred thousand premature births are recorded and in Bungoma County in every one thousand births recorded sixty-four deaths are recorded saying the rate is very high and something must be done.

Dr. Mutoro, therefore, called upon the health stakeholders to ensure they sensitize expectant mothers to deliver in hospitals saying it will be safe and also help them be given guidance on how to take care of their children well.

He applauded the efforts of saving the children initiative saying they have been able to save many lives and further called upon other partners willing to come and work with them.

His sentiments were echoed by County nurse Gertrude Wanyonyi who said some of the things that contribute to premature births include malaria as most of the expectant mothers do not sleep under mosquito nets.

She also cautioned women who do not use family planning to start doing so saying conceiving a short period after delivery is risky as the womb would not have been ready to accommodate another child.