No Malawian woman should die because she wants to give birth, President Joyce Banda said on Friday at Dowa District Hospital when she laid a foundation stone for a maternity waiting home.
Banda, who has always been an advocate for safe motherhood, said the maternity waiting home will help pregnant women access medical care at an early stage.
“Women will come to this home to wait for their delivery, when they come early to hospitals, the deaths of women will be reduced,” said Banda.
The President added that it’s a shame that the country’s maternal mortality rate is second after Sierra Leon where there was civil war.
The Malawi leader said there is need to continue doubling efforts towards lowering the maternal mortality rate.
Banda, who weeks ago launched the Presidential Initiative on Maternal Health and Safe motherhood, has lived to her promise as she has promised to end the problems that expectant mothers face in the country.
The President appealed to all Malawians specially men to ensure their wives (mothers) and children enjoy the basic human right of access to good health.
She also said there is need for a united approach from stakeholders and the nation at large to ensure that no woman dies whilst giving birth and no child shall die below the age of five.
Banda revealed that she will engage in an initiative aimed at providing solar powered lamps to health centres and has since donated some to traditional authority Msakambewa for experimentation.
Willie Zingani,Limbe Leaf Tobacco Company Corporate Services Manager, announced that the company will adopt the program at the tune of 16 Million Kwacha to help in the building of the waiting home for women.
“Our company will see to it that we lend a hand towards any development initiative especially those aimed at uplifting the lives of women and children,” said Zingani.
TA Msakambewa thanked President Banda for the commendable work she is doing in regards safe motherhood and he assured the President that he will work hand in hand with her on issues pertaining to maternal health.
Speaking at the function, District Health Officer for Dowa, Dr Amos Msekandiana said the district maternal mortality rate has improved as most women now deliver at hospital0
“About 91 per cent of pregnant women attend antenatal clinic but most of them do not deliver at the hospital due to long distances, and the availability of a big maternity waiting home will ensure that they give birth at the hospital since they will arrive just before labour therefore reducing such deaths,” said Msekandiana..–(Additional reporting by Thokozani M. Chikuni)
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