FG Develops Plan Against Neonatal, Maternal Deaths

The Federal Ministry of Health said it has developed an implementation plan for a 15 life-saving commodities for neonatal and mothers in the country to check neonatal/maternal death.

This was disclosed at a one day Advocacy and Sensitization meeting on Neonatal Commodity organized for the media and professional health bodies by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in conjunction with the Federal Ministry of Health in Owerri, the capital of Imo State.

Mrs Ezioma Madu a staff of the Federal Ministry of Health and the Facilitator of the programme noted that 15 commodities were enlisted in the plan along life cycle continuum of reproductive and maternal health, child and neonatal health.

She said the overall objective of the plan was to provide a road-map that ensures the availability, affordability and accessibility of the commodities which include Oxytocin, Misoperostol, Magnessium Sulfate, Zinc, inject-able antibiotics and 4% Chlorhexidine Gel.

According to her, the key neonatal health commodities accelerated for broader use in Nigeria include antenatal corticosteroids to accelerate fetal lung maturity, inject-able antibiotics for neonatal sepsis, neonatal resuscitation devices for birth asphyxia and 4%Chlorhexidine Gel.

She pointed out that no significant progress has been made in addressing the high rate of neonatal mortality in Nigeria in the last decade, saying the aim of the meeting was to create more awareness on the use of “4% Chlorhexidine Gel” an effective and new product for umbilical cord care.”

Madu observed that the rate of progress in addressing neonatal mortality has been slow and identified skills gap, poor referral network, inadequate training, poor policy implementation and inadequate supply of the commodities as major challenges.

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