To assist pregnant women meet their immediate needs after delivery, UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund in Liberia has distributed “mama and baby kits” to three health facilities. The facilities include the James N. Davies Memorial Hospital, the Star of the Sea Clinic in Monrovia and the Phebe Hospital in Suacoco, Bong County.
The “mama and baby kits” contained essential supplies for survival and personal hygiene for the mother and the baby after delivery.
UNFPA Liberia Resident Representative Ratidzai Ndhlovu said the presentations were aimed at encouraging delivery in health facility. “Because we are encouraging institutional delivery, it is necessary to motivate pregnant women to deliver at the hospital,” Ms. Ndhlovu said at the presentation ceremony on 15 January in Phebe, Bong County.
“We want to work with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare(MoSHW) to standardize this program as we want it to be a proper and systematized intervention,” she said.
In Phebe, Ms. Ndhlovu urged pregnant women who were temporarily staying at the waiting home awaiting their time to deliver, to promote to their colleagues the idea of delivering in health facility and use opportunities offered by the waiting homes. “All that is done is to assure that you stand to benefit a lot when you come to the hospital to deliver. We hope that you will use this experience to go out in your villages and towns to tell people that the best place for pregnant women to deliver is the hospital,” she urged the women.
The UNFPA Liberia Representative made a personal contribution of two bags of rice and two containers of cooking oil to the waiting home at Phebe. “The last time I visited this facility, I was informed that food is one of the major challenges you are faced with. So, I decided to personally share this little token with you,” she said.
In his remarks, Bong County Health Officer, Dr. Sampson Arzoaquoi, also urged pregnant women throughout the county to consider hospital as the best place to deliver their babies. “Our efforts to reduce maternal and newborn deaths will fail if pregnant women continue to deliver at home,” he said.