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Clinic Renovation boosts women access to Healthcare

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By Ndidi Chukwu

Increasing the number of women accessing healthcare in Nigeria has been a major priority for health Stakeholders in improving Maternal care. According 2013 National Demographic Health Survey, (NDHS), Nigeria’s maternal mortality rate is at 576 per 100, 000 live births. Ndanusa Kawu Saba, Head, Lugbe Primary Health Care Center, said women interest to access healthcare could increase when health centers are “made clean” renovated to the taste of the women.

“Women are very selective of where they go for antenatal, delivery and family planning, these are things we should no longer ignore in this country if our maternal mortality rate must drop” his comment came as Nigeria Urban Reproductive Health Initiative (NURHI) completed renovation of “AMAC Clinic Lugbe”

Health workers in 20 bed space clinic renovated by NURHI in the last two months are now dealing with crowd control, Ndanusa said “it was not like this before, we used to beg these women to come here and take delivery and antenatal care, but they will tell you no, because of the state of the clinic”

NURHI, supplied mama kits, drugs, delivery beds, and renovated AMAC Clinic to get women to access the health care services, but Ndanusa said “the moral of health workers is also boosted, they have equipment to work at all time”

Mrs. Juliana Jimoh, a Community Health Extension worker (CHEW) said
“Since NURHI came for renovation, so many women have been coming for family planning, now we work under a very clean environment and the women who are coming to register for antenatal, immunization of their babies and family planning are very happy, it has increased the number of women access healthcare in this health clinic”

Challenges however remain, “the family planning method we are giving them here is only injectable, implant and IUD services are not done here so when they come we refer them to General hospitals and demand for the implant is high because it has longer protection that the injectable we give them”

“The implant from what I heard is that only nurses are allowed to do that, but we have midwives in this clinic that are yet to be trained, currently we have four midwives in this clinic” Jimoh said

In order not to keep referring women to other clinics for implants which may discourage them at the end of the day, Jimoh is urging the government to give health extension workers the “go ahead” to begin implant for family planning programmes, “if we are trained we can do it, we take delivery and that will not be difficult for us to carry out, because the midwives are not enough in health facilities”

She said “if we must boost our family planning programmes in this country,  CHEWs have to be trained to do implant, because people believe it works more than other FP types”
“Most of these women get discourage when they come here and we refer them, they just go back home”

We need the federal ministry of health to reverse this so that CHEWs can do family planning for women too “this is the only challenge we have and it makes it difficult for these women to make their family planning choices”
“No complications comes with family planning, the effect is just temporary as the woman’s body adjusts to the FP at the initial stage, it doesn’t kill, and it doesn’t prevent a woman from conceiving”

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