Urgent steps required to check child mortality rate

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THE health experts stressed to adopt a pro-active approach against the child mortality calling it a great challenge ahead for the country as United Nations International Children’s Emergency Funds (UNICEF) recent report on newborn deaths revealed that one out of every twenty two child dies at the time of birth.
Sameena Khalid Assistant Professor Maternal , New born and Child Health Unit(MNCH) , Health Services Academy referring to the report said it was alarming situation that the country was considered as a riskiest place for the new born even ahead of eight sub-Saharan African poor countries.
“The statistics reveal that almost 250,000 new born lose their lives, an eye opener for the authorities concerned and the situations demands practical emergency measures to overcome the issue” she warned.
She said the most effective tool was to create awareness among pregnant women to adopt appropriate dietary and precautionary measurements during pregnancy.
“It is common phenomenon that people bring the patients to the hospitals at end stage due to economic in-affordability to monitor consistent health during pregnancy.The risk of child mortality then enhances as the doctors had no other option left at eleventh hour of delivery and even after child’s birth” , she regretted.
She stressed for the refresher training of midwives on modern lines to properly handle the pregnant women and refer the patients to hospitals in time.
The deliveries must not be handled by midwives to avoid complications and unauthorized prescription by them must also be discouraged in order to reduce the growing child mortality rates, she urged.
She also stressed for availability of 24/7 clean water and skilled staff in the hospitals. “The women in our country have no say particularly on their health issues and they must be acquainted with their due rights”, she added.
She also asked to discourage traditional “Gutti” and said mother be forced to breast feed their infants to have strong immune system, “a God’s blessing against all ailments”.
Head of gynecology department at Pakistan Institution of Medical Sciences Sayeda Batool said health of mother and child were interlinked as majority of premature deliveries and birth of malnourished children were due to presence of different diseases in the mothers.

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