Across Afghanistan, premature babies are regularly sent home with their mothers just hours after birth and often die within a short time. The Midwifery Extension Project is helping more newborns survive by providing specialized care to premature babies and those who are born with complications.
Mrs. Sharifa’s first four pregnancies did not end well. She delivered each of her babies at home, premature (between 28 and 32 weeks), and without the presence of a skilled birth attendant. Determined to have a more positive experience with her fifth pregnancy, Mrs. Sharifa rushed to Herat Maternity Hospital at the first signs of labor. She was 30 weeks pregnant.
After six hours of labor Mrs. Sharifa gave birth to a healthy baby boy weighing only two pounds. He was transferred immediately to the special care neonatal unit where he received around-the-clock care by midwives and remained in an incubator for three weeks. After 40 days, his weight had nearly doubled and he was released to go home. Mrs. Sharifa is just one of many women whose families are benefiting from the Midwifery Extension Project at Herat Maternity Hospital.
More project stats and photos will be in our next update. Stay tuned!
Dec 2, 2011
Midwife Training & Neonatal Care - Update Dec 2011
By Bernadette Martin - Project Manager
Ultimately the goal is to reduce maternal and infant morbidity and mortality rates in Herat, by improving the quality of care to babies and mothers at Herat Maternity hospital
The maternity unit of Herat hospital is a 100 bed facility serving a patient population of nearly 2 million people. It is a major regional referral hospital serving patients from all of the surrounding rural areas as well as Herat city itself. Approximately 1,600 babies are delivered in the hospital in a typical month. Of these, about 10% will have birth complications and need to spend some time in the neonatal care unit.
The Maternity Hospital has recently moved into a new, modern building that is a vast improvement over its previous location, but the improvement in physical infrastructure does not in itself lead to improved health outcomes or enhanced quality of care. Afghanistan is a conservative Muslim country in which most women are unwilling to be treated by male healthcare providers. The number of skilled providers at the Herat Maternity Hospital is still not sufficient to ensure that all mothers and babies receive quality care and the Ministry of Public Health does not have sufficient resources to increase the number of staff.
This project addresses these identified needs by employing midwives at the hospital for three years. 24 midwives have been hired to train and work full-time. They are receiving on the job training, supportive supervision and capacity building to support their development. This project improves the level of service delivery at the hospital and also home deliveries in the surrounding area.
Stay tuned for more details in our next report!
Jan 25, 2011
One year on Haiti Earthquake Response
By World Vision - WVI
World Vision, already present in Haiti, sent staff and pre-positioned aid and immediately activated its Global Rapid Response Team to undertake the largest single-country emergency response in the organisation’s history.
The scale of destruction in such a high-density urban setting, combined with the loss of major government and administrative structures, presented an unprecedented situation with massive challenges in the transportation and coordination of aid. The degree of human suffering was staggering.
Amidst the complexities, World Vision, in partnership with local actors and other agencies, worked to meet the basic and urgent needs of children and their families and ease the distress of affected communities.
Emergency relief supplies such as food, water, shelter supplies, blankets, and cooking and hygiene kits were immediately distributed. Supplies were shipped into the damaged port while warehouses were set up in Jimani (on the Dominican Republic border) and Miami as storage points for the overflow of supplies en route to Haiti.
World Vision undertook a series of rapid assessments in Port-au-Prince and existing operational areas (La Gonave, North, Plateau Central, and South regions). Programming extended across all of these areas to help masses of people looking for refuge and livelihoods. World Vision also participated in inter-agency and United Nations (UN) assessments and the inter-agency Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) led by the Government of Haiti and the UN Cluster Survey Report
A programme design process ensured World Vision projects supported both host communities and earthquake-affected families. A baseline study helped to better understand the status and vulnerability of households and communities and gauge aid effectiveness.
Drawing on three decades of experience in Haiti, findings from assessments and a consultative programme design, World Vision developed an initial 90-day plan and an integrated 12-month response. Both prioritised child well-being, food assistance, livelihoods, health and nutrition, shelter, non-food items, water, sanitation and hygiene, and advocacy. Accountability, disability, environment, gender, disaster risk reduction and protection remain crosscutting parts of the programme.
Attached is the long-anticipated Haiti one-year report that will go into more detail.