Article from Dhaka's The News Today
Underprivileged mothers of Titas upaliza in Comilla who had their deliveries and anti-natal care services at health complex or any other health facilities are getting cash incentives and gifts for new born babies.
Some 700 mothers, living under poverty line received Tk 2,500 each as cash incentive and travel cost for visiting health facilities.
Poor mothers also received a gift package of saree and clothes for new born babies from Upzila Health & Family Planning Officer (UH&FPO) of Titas Dr. Abdur Rashid Molla. DSF Coordinator Masum Al Jaki was also present on the occasion.
The Demand Side Financing (DSF) activities started in Titas upazila in September 2009. Since then a total of 2,136 mothers had their deliveries in health facilities. Some TK.58 lakh have been distributed among the poor pregnant mothers in Titas upazila till the time.
Government of Bangladesh in collaboration of World Health Organization (WHO) is implementing the project titled Maternal Health Voucher Scheme under DSF Programme.
The scheme started on 2004 nationally and got full strength on 2007. Now the DSF project is running in 46 upazila of the country like Titas upazila.
“Under the programme, poor mothers will receive Tk 3,000 (including gift) from the government for visiting the health centres for check-up and medicine apart from free of cost delivery or caesarean section,” said Dr. Abdus Salam Khan, National Coordinator of DSF Programme.
The service providers will also get Tk 3,000 for providing the services properly. The service will be available for the families whose monthly earning is Tk 2,500 or less for the first two children.
According to a recent server, 320 mothers die per 100,000 live births and the neonatal mortality ratio is 37 per thousand live births. This MMR is five times higher than Sri Lanka and Vietnam and ten times higher than Malaysia.
Salam Khan said the government has taken the DSF programme to reduce maternal mortality ratio (MMR) to 143 per 100,000 live births and infant mortality ratio (IMR) to 31 per 1,000 live births by 2015 and to bring the pregnant mothers under the health facilities in this regard.