Blames the high maternal mortality rate on poverty
The Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital, Professor Henry Ugboma, has said the university will begin open-heart surgeries before the end of the year.
The CMD made the revelation this weekend at the launch of the Safe Birth initiative in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, sponsored by Coca-Cola in conjunction with Medshare International and the Federal Ministry of Health.
Ugboma said that with the delivery of two heart and lung machines, the hospital is equipped to begin the treatment of infants born with cardiovascular diseases, adding that the hospital has a competent team of thoracic surgeons to carry out the first open heart surgery in hospital.
He said, “We are looking forward to starting the process of open heart surgery in this hospital before the end of the year because we have the manpower, the people trained in this field, especially the thoracic surgeons.
“Because there is a case where some children born with heart disease die because they cannot afford the expenses associated with health care and no equipment to do such a procedure, but this team has made it possible that this equipment be with us today as we will soon be starting open heart surgery for infants.
He blamed the high maternal mortality rate on poverty and the high cost of service delivery, pointing out that about 1,200 pregnant women register at the hospital every month, while about 150 deliveries are recorded every month. .
He attributed the shortcomings to pregnant women who use traditional birth attendants due to the high cost of services at the hospital. He noted that UPTH, being a beneficiary of maternal and neonatal health equipment and two heart and lung machines, the lives of children born with cardiovascular disease would be saved, adding that it would reduce maternal mortality and the cost of health care. ‘childbirth.
MEANWHILE, Safe Birth Initiative sponsor Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited said the idea was to strengthen the health system across the country. According to the Director of Public Affairs, Communications and Sustainability of Coca-Cola Nigeria, Nwamaka Onyemelukwe, most of the donated equipment was already in use in overseas hospitals but fully functional.
She said: “This is an initiative of the Coca-Cola Company, launched in 2018 to strengthen the healthcare system across the country and this hospital is one of eight beneficiaries.”