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Maternal mortality in Ghana drops

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stethoscopeMs Sherry Ayittey, Minister of Health designate, said that statistics show that maternal mortality in the country has currently dropped from 500 to 340, and efforts would be made to reduce it further.

She appealed to health care providers to intensify education on antenatal care, to enable pregnant women to understand their conditions better and take good care of themselves and their unborn babies.

Ms Ayittey made the observation when she appeared before the Appointments Committee of Parliament for vetting on Friday.

She said “we must encourage women to rise above superstition as most women when they are in labour find all kinds of reasons to go to old women, who they belief would assist in a safe delivery”,  adding that civil society and non-governmental organisations would be encouraged to support the educate of women on pregnancy-related issues.

Ms Ayittey said if given the nod to head the Ministry, she would ensure that health centres, including the Polyclinics, are  well-equipped to provide quality health care.

She said there was the need for nurses to be provided with mobile phones and motorbikes to facilitate health care delivery during  emergency situations.

Ms Ayittey  said government was committed to providing every district with ambulance services, adding that efforts would be made to create emergency centres with ambulances to give first aid to accident victims.

She said St John’s Ambulance Service and other private ambulance service providers with the requisite skills could assist in training those who would handle the ambulances..

Ms Ayittey said the College of Physicians and Surgeons would also be strengthened to enhance quality health care service, which would be made accessible through the creation of community health centers.

She advocated that part of funding for the National Health Insurance Scheme should to be allocated to mental hospitals as the Mental Health Bill has been passed.

Ms Ayittey said the government would rehabilitate and finance the Western, Upper East and Upper West Regional Hospitals, and liaise with the Ghana Medical Association to improve upon the doctor-patient ration.

The Health Minister designate said the Public Health Act has made provision for the incorporation of traditional medicine into the health system,  and called for  the resourcing of the Akropong Traditional Medical Centre as 60 per cent of Ghanaians use traditional medicine.

Ms Ayittey said the public and private health institutions would be regulated to provide quality health care to Ghanaians.

Source: GNA

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