By Haruna Gimba
Ondo State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Dayo Adeyanju said the state reduced Maternal Mortality Ratio (MMR) by 84.9 per cent from 745 per 1000,000 live births in 2009, to 112 per 100,000 live births in 2016.
The commissioner said the state was able to achieve the feat by co-opting Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs)/Agbebi and optimizing their services with the Abiye programme spread across the 18 Local Government Areas (LGAs) and two dedicated Mother and Child Hospitals.
He said the concept is tagged; Abiye is Yoruba literary translation of safe motherhood while Agbebi means local birth attendants or TBAs.
Dr. Adeyanju said government initiated Agbebiye, a partnership with TBAs, Faith Based Organisations (FBOs) and Mission Home Birth Attendants (MHBAs), aimed at ensuring safe pregnancy for all mothers in the state.
He said: “We still have the only pioneer Mother and Child Hospital in Akure, but today, what is new is that Abiye has been scaled up across the entire 18 Local Government Areas of the state, and the Mother and Child Hospital has been replicated in Ondo; making two Mother and Child Hospitals.
“The beauty of this is that, with all of that, when we had the three year impact assessment, we were only able to succeed in reducing maternal mortality from 745 per 100,000 life birth to 317 as average. This is empirically based from all the survey we conducted using the sisterhood method, the one conducted by institute of public health.”