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Nigeria’s former Minister of Health, Professor Adenike Grange has blamed the Nigerian governments at all levels for the poor health care delivery system in the country.
Delivering a keynote speech at the 19th Professor Bassey Andah Memorial Lecture at weekend, Professor Grange said short life expectancy caused by high infant and maternal mortality rate is one of the major challenges facing the country’s healthcare delivery system.
Contrary to emerging evidence which has proved that HIV-positive women who breastfeed maximise their babies’ health prospects, Nigerian mothers living with the infection are still evading the exercise.
Until recently, the World Health Organisation (WHO) advised HIV-positive mothers to avoid breastfeeding if they were able to afford, prepare and store formula milk safely.
Women in Lagos State have cried out to Governor Akinwunmi Ambode over what they described as the exorbitant cost of accessing maternal healthcare in government-owned medical facilities in the state, demanding that the state government redefine the term ‘free healthcare’ which it claims to be offering to expectant women.
According to researchers, a substantial proportion of neonatal deaths occur from infections; neonatal tetanus inclusive of the umbilical cord. Cord care practices may directly contribute to infections in the newborn which accounts for the 26 per cent of global under five deaths, experts say. Evidence from studies also show that the prevalence of cord infection in newborns ranges from 3 to 5.5 per cent in most developing countries.
Dame Okowa, wife of the Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, has warned mothers to be the ambassadors of health for their wards by taking vaccination of their children and wards seriously or be held responsible if preventable diseases affect them.
Dame Okowa stated this in Asaba when she flagged off the second round of Maternal Newborn Child Health Week (MNCHW), reiterating that the state government had started implementing free medical care for the elderly and disabled as well as improved the free under five medical services.