Somalia is one of the sub-Saharan countries that have one of the highest maternal mortality ratios of 1,044 deaths per 100,000 live births. The lack of availability and access to basic and emergency obstetric care is a major cause of the high levels of maternal mortality and morbidity. Barriers to accessing reproductive health care are many as reflected in only one out of four pregnant women attending antenatal care. The present pool of qualified reproductive health staff is small, aged and under-trained, with a serious shortage of qualified midwives.
Women at reproductive age living at IDPs in Afgoye ,Wanlaweyn and Barawe districts of lower Shabelle are 101,000 IDPs (Afgoye=60,000, wanlaweyn 21,000 and Barawe 20,000). Women at reproductive age in these IDPs are at risk of postpartum hemorrhage, Eclampsia, pre-Eclampsia, abnormalities of presentation, over weight babies, previous obstetric, severe anemia and unsafe abortion and the situation is much worse with the IDPs population due to-:
- Lack of maternity shelter and maternity service at the IDP camps.
- Limited provision of healthcare services to the IDPs especially maternity services.
- Health services/hospitals are far from the IDP settlements.
- Security and transportation concern especially at night.
- The available health facilities are overstretched and stock outs are normal
- IDPs are depending on traditional birth attendants for their RH services.
- Few health care workers in the existing facilities.
This project which is ongoing and being conducted in partnership with UNFPA has for a period of six months (first quarter) conducted the following:
- A. Establishment of 3 maternity waiting homes in Afgoye, Wanlaweyn and Barawe
OSPAD first and foremost organized the local populations and recruited expert health staff from the region: nurses, doctors and midwives and held a meeting at OSPAD sub office in Afgoye on September 14. The aim of the meeting was mainly introduction of the Maternity Waiting Homes (MWHs) staff to the project and setting the field agenda/work plan for the first quarter.
On September 13- 17, 2012, three waiting maternity homes were established in Afgoye,Wanlaweyn and Barawe respectively. The maternity home in Afgoye is located in Buula-Tiinka neighborhood just across the river towards Wanlaweyn road. It is called Al-Hidaaya Maternity Waiting Home and is quite close to IDP settlements in Afgoye town. The Maternity Waiting Home in Wanlaweyn is located in Bakaal neighborhood on the northern side of the tarmac road. The facility is called Walanweien Maternity Waiting Home and has significant number of IDPs around it. The Maternity Waiting Home in Barawe is located in Dayax neighborhood in the west part of Barawe near Ceelka Xaji Ridwaan. The facility called (Barava Maternity Waiting home) has IDP settlements just within a stone’s throw away from it. The three facilities were equipped with the items collected from UNFPA office in Mogadishu. All staff including nurses, midwives and doctors was recruited and started work at the three facilities. The beneficiaries and the general population in the project target were happy about the project and showed welcoming gestures and hospitality.
The three maternity waiting homes are now functioning smoothly with beneficiaries attending and receiving services from the staff. The communities in the three localities within which the maternity waiting homes are operating are showing collaborative attitude and respect towards the maternity homes and their staff. Security of the maternity homes is good and they are not impacted by the ongoing operations by the Federal Government and AMISOM against militants because they are established for humanitarian purposes and have nothing to do with politics or the warring parties.
As for the monthly expected number of delivery in each maternity home, it is estimated to be 30-35 deliveries which mean that approximately up to 90-105 deliveries will be carried out in all the three maternity homes combined.
- B. Provision of adequate maternal health services by increasing access to a quality comprehensive Emocin the three towns.
For this reporting quarter (three months) up to 275 deliveries were made at the three maternity homes in the three towns. The breakup of this number is: at Afgoye maternity home (92), Wanlaweyn (89) and Barawe (94). The general conditions of the delivered mothers and their babies were good and the services they received at the maternity homes were satisfactory.