Highlighting the problems mothers in Ethiopia face, a special issue of the Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health explores how community-based methods maintain the health of mothers and their newborn children.
Ethiopia’s Demographic and Health Survey shows that the unmet need for contraceptives in this Horn of Africa nation now stands at 25.3 percent.
Gudaal, along with all of the other health extension workers, has gone through a special, one-year training program.
“We have seen that postpartum family planning is essential, is needed. It saves lives. We think that this resource document is going to help many countries do more to reach women, who right now may be confused about family planning options right around the time of birth.”
Retention of midwives, especially in rural areas, is a major challenge for many countries, one that threatens to negate all the hard work and resources invested in their training.
Global leaders and health champions will press the case for expanded family planning services to improve maternal, newborn and child health.
Ethiopia, a low-income country in the drought prone Horn of Africa, has achieved the millennium development goal to cut the mortality rate for children under the age of five ahead of the 2015 deadline, according to figures published on Friday.
The report indicated that even some of the world’s poorest countries were able to dramatically reduce child mortality rates.
Neonatal deaths – that occur in the first 28 days of life – are the hardest to tackle. These vulnerable newborns accounted for 44 per cent of under-five deaths in 2012, according to the Unicef report.
The announcement came on Friday at the International Conference on Maternal, Newborn and Child Health in Africa, held in Johannesburg, South Africa.