Kitovu Mobile is to continue supporting pregnant mothers living with HIV through information sharing and social support as a means to prevent the spread of HIV to their newly born babies. A total of twenty-six (93%) mothers attended the workshop of which sixteen were pregnant and ten were breast feeding. These mothers came from different centers within the Comprehensive Care operational area which included; Bukakata, Lwaggulwe, Bukulula, Mpambire, Mbirizi and Bisanje.
The sessions conducted covered areas which included; the role of these mothers in achieving millennium development goals 4, 5&6, the role of attending Antenatal care (ANC) in PMTCT, preparation for delivery, why option B+, measuring weight, Blood pressures ,investigating for abnormalities in urine and managing any pregnancy related complications. The methods used included; Guided discussions, Testimonies, question and answer approach. The workshop intended to create awareness to mothers about the available national PMTCT interventions to ensure zero new HIV infections
Each of these mothers received either a mama kit or an insecticide treated mosquito net.
It was noted that many women in the reproductive age are not aware of the importance of cervical cancer screening. It was therefore necessary to inform these mothers about the importance of screening for cervical cancer to enable detect the disease early.
The facilitator highlighted to the mothers the importance of having their pregnancy monitored in a healthcare setting. Such importance included:
Four mothers had their systolic blood pressure ranging between 130-140mmHg with a normal diastolic blood pressure. Their urinalysis results were found normal. They were advised to continue monitoring their Blood pressure and to reduce on the amount of salt eaten.
Three mothers were tested for malaria parasites, and two of them had positive Rapid Diagnostic Tests (RDTs) .They were provided with coartem drugs (pregnancy was beyond the first trimester).These mothers are among those who received insecticide treated mosquito nets. None of the mothers had pregnancy related complications.
Mothers who were pregnant presented their Ante-natal visit books. This provided proof that they are attending antenatal clinics.
According to (WHO, 2013) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), the proportion of the population with access to an ITN in their household increased dramatically from 2005 to 2011 but the rate flattened during the last 2 years, reaching 42% in 2013. By 2012, 34 countries in the African Region had adopted the WHO recommendation to provide ITNs to all persons at risk for malaria. Being at a risk of malaria, both pregnant and breast feeding mothers were provided with ITNs to protect the mother, the unborn and the infant from malaria infection.
Kitovu Mobile AIDS organization provides service to poor pregnant mothers who cannot afford buying a mama kit. This results into these mothers using unclean rags to pad themselves after delivery; this puts their lives at a risk of infections. Therefore in order to reduce chances of acquiring infections during and after delivery, all pregnant mothers were provided with mama kits.
The mothers made a commitment to attend antenatal at least four times during the course of pregnancy.
They promised to sensitize fellow mothers in the community about the importance of attending ANC, option B+, and testing the child for HIV at six weeks of life, six weeks after stopping breast feeding, and not to deliver from the traditional birth attendants.
They requested for food supplements like baby soya to help them boost nutritional status of their children during the weaning period.
Some of the mothers deliver from lower level health care facilities which face stock outs of nevirapine syrup. Therefore they requested the CCT Program to provide them with nevirapine syrups.
Transportation of babies for Dry Blood Samples (DBS) is a challenge for these mothers because many of them lack the power to manage resources at home. They requested for facilitation to enable them take babies for PCR and for immunization.
In conclusion we appreciate and acknowledge all development partners that have supported this great work. Together we can!!
Despite the HIV/AIDS status of the pregnant mothers, It is encouraging to note that most of them have been able to give birth to babies free from HIV and this was possible due to tremendous efforts from Kitovu Mobile staff and the network Community workers and Expert clients who worked tirelessly to sensitize the masses and to give the necessary support to those in need.
To date 69.2% are female clients enrolled ART and the Kitovu Mobile team is dedicated to paying frequent visits to the mothers to ensure that they receive antenatal care before giving birth and postnatal care to ensure the birth of healthy babies and the mother as well. With the help of their husbands we have encouraged the pregnant mothers to go for immunization as well as those that have delivered to take their babies for immunization.
It worth noting that the formerly trained mothers are now working as TOT to pass on the knowledge to other women pertaining taking care of their newly born babies and themselves regarding breast feeding and treatment. It is all a success as these mothers are now acting as a work force in the dissemination process. Kitovu Mobile nurses tirelessly visit the mothers at their meeting centers to ensure that they receive all the required treatment and counseling. It really gives hope as most of the mothers are committed to taking their drugs which promises healthy babies as well as the mother.
Kitovu Mobile intends to reach 500 women this year with support to prevent mother to child transmission of HIV. Through Masaka district network for AIDS service organization (MADNASO) and Masaka district HIV consortium Kitovu Mobile has higher hoeps to achieve her target. Through the quarterly planning meetings the coordinator MADNASO has mapped out all the service providers with PMTCT services that subscribe to the network and over 15 organizations in Masaka district have been identified. Together with the coordinator we have developed a work plan to address the following issues.
Expanding PMTCT services to all 30 Antinental Care and delivery services in masaka District
Preventing new infections by atleats 10% among women, and improving access to Family planning services among women living with HIV.
Improving equitable access to skilled attendants at delivery for all women; advocate to reduce on the high out of pocket spending.on health.
Increasing access to combination ARVs for PMTCT and treatment for Pregnant women living with HIV, and improving continuity of care for mother by atleast 20%
In the struggle to support pregnant mothers living with HIV to have HIV free babies Kitovu Mobile has gone ahead to sensitize women at child bearing age.. The sensitization meetings have targeted both pregnant mothers and non pregnant mothers specifically on how they can protect their babies before and after delivery.
This activity was spear headed by kitovu Mobile staff members with outstanding skills in community mobilization and co-ordination, so this group played significant role to put the community on board more so the pregnant mothers who were the main target of this project however, the presence of their husbands was also expected. Mothers were encouraged to always visit our centers for HIV counselling and testing. During the sensitization meetings participants received some tips on how they can take care of themselves and their newly babies. It was amazing that women developed a work plan on how they intend to receive such trainings.
Since August this year over 60 women have been tested and advised by the medical personnel.
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