Dear HOPE Supporter,
Your support of our project to train birth attendants made our project to provide 500 women with antenatal care and encourage skilled birth attendance a huge success! Not only did we provide 500 women in our local area with antenatal care, whereas only 7% in this area normally receive it, but we increased hospital delivery from 10% to 30% and skilled birth attendance at home from 8% to 40%. There were ZERO maternal mortalities and ZERO cases of obstetric fistula, a childbirth injury prevalent in this area. All 500 women received education on caring for herself and baby post- delivery, nutrition counseling, breastfeeding counseling and family planning.
This was an excellent experience for our birth attendant students to truly engage with pregnant mothers, improve their quality of care and understanding how to work with patients on-on-one, and to gain meaninful experience navigating appropriate ways to disseminate sometimes culturally sensitive information such as family planning. HOPE could not be happier. Please read below a story of one of the patients who was educated by our students and made a critical decision regarding both her and her baby's lives:
Johura is 27 years old and has finished schooling up to class 8. This was Johura’s second pregnancy. In her first pregnancy she suffered uterine complications and to avert the recurrence this time she enrolled to ensure a safe delivery. During ANC, she came to know about the Dos and Don’ts during pregnancy and benefitted tremendously. While attending an interactive counseling session during ANC, Johura shared her experience about her first which was a home-based birth without skilled a skilled birth attendant. After giving birth to her second child at HOPE she found that HOPE provided her the necessary care and support. The baby is doing well and being exclusively breast-fed as recommended.
Here at HOPE we get excited when different projects come together to pursue greater outcomes for our mission. The women who have been trained as birth attendants thus far are incorporated in another project of ours, providing delivery and safe pregnancy to rural women in our communities. Our birth attendants are instrumental in this project for a few reasons. One, in addition to our Mothers' Clubs, they are essential in recruiting expectant women in need to the project; two, they are active in the antenatal care services. Not only are they providing the actual services and counseling groups of women at a time to educate them on the importance of ANC, they are calling these women to remind them of their appointments, provide information and answer any questions they may have. Existing as a wealth of information is important in this area where reproductive health is not openly discussed, and therefore women stay in the dark about crucial steps they should be taking to protect themselves and their babies. We are ecstatic to see these attendants utilize their training and education to make huge differences in the lives of their communities.
The birth attendants in training at HOPE Hospital are able to gain a special opportunity in the field. Due to a special grant provided to us by a women's giving circle, HOPE Foundation will be providing 500 pregnant women with full antenatal care and 100 special needs mothers with transportation to the hospital for delivery. This project affords us the opportunity to utilize our birth attendant trainees in getting into the field and working with mothers. They will not only be able to put their newly attained skills to use, but will also begin to see the ibncredible impact their jobs have on saving lives. They will come to this recognition as they encounter women with complications such as high blood pressure, diabetes, anemia and malnutrition. All of these conditions illicit urgent attention on the mother, particularly when she delivers birth. If our birth attendants did not provide them these serices, these women would not know otherwise of their potentially fatal conditions.
We look forward to seeing how our students perform in the field and to update you with these results. Thank you for your commitment to training health workers and meeting the high demand in the rural area of Cox's Bazar. Together we can save lives.
Did you know that every year in Bangladesh 3 million women become pregnant, and out of that 3 million an estimated 600,000 are expected to develop complications? Complications range from obstetric fistula, urinary incontinence, infection, post-partum hemorrhage and so much more. Utilizing the birth attendants we have already trained, these women have gone above and beyond to educate the communities in which they live and serve as to the importance of maternal care. Due to an increase in education, 147 ultrasounds have been performed in the first two months of 2014 alone. The number of rural women seeking ultrasound services has improved dramatically, indicating that our birth attendants are hard at work raising awareness for preventive care and services prior to delivery. A simple ultrasound can let the doctor, birth attendant and patient know whether the mother is experiencing a high-risk pregnancy due to fetal positioning, a narrow birth canal, and other factors that lead to a dangerous birth at home. It is with the trust these patients have formed with their birth attendants, all local women, hat have enabled this breakthrough in access to services. Thank you for your support in this endeavor. We couldn't do it without you.
We want to thank you for your invaluable commitment to not only saving mothers and newborns’ lives but also to building the capacity of the local women of Cox’s Bazar. This is a special project of HOPE’s as these trained women can go out into the community and start their own businesses, or they are more than welcome to work for HOPE’s outreach programs. The empowerment that these women have in choosing their career paths is novel in this area and it is a breath of fresh air.
The women being trained currently as birth attendants are learning such an increased amount due to the visits of international physicians. Resurge International, a California-based organization that works to repair burns held a burn repair camp but also worked diligently in training our staff in burn care as well as increased care. HOPE’s birth attendants were present for these workshops and received specialized training in burn patient care. While burn care does not immediately make sense for birthing attendants, it is the increased knowledge and practice gained by seasoned medical professions that is imparted to our staff that truly help them to grow and become better medical professionals. Please see below as Harshada learns how to resuscitate a newborn.
As always, thank you for your dedicated commitment to improving maternal health in an area that so desperately needs it.
Best Rest regards this holiday season!
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Ramu, South Mitachari,