In December 2017, VHP assessed 1 district hospital and 4 health centers in Ethiopia's rural Bench Maji Zone and found that women coming in to deliver had no place to stay, shower, or deliver safely. Without key infrastructure and access to clean water, women slept under trees waiting to deliver in labor and delivery rooms where side by side delivery is common, at best exam tables are cleaned with dirty rags, instruments aren't sterilized, and mothers and providers have no means to wash up
Giving expectant mothers a place to stay near health facilities encourages them to deliver where skilled assistance at the time of delivery is available. Proper disposal of biohazard materials, use of latrines, and access to clean water for drinking, washing and cleaning medical equipment/surgical instruments limits exposure to infection/disease making healthcare safer. Implementation of VHP's WASH and Maternal Healthcare Initiative aims to improve the odds of survival for mothers/newborns.
VHP partners with the Ethiopian government, Afro Ethiopia Integrated Development and Engineers Without Borders to construct maternity waiting areas with kitchens/showers/latrines, improve access to clean water, build fenced biohazard areas with incinerators/placenta pits, and educate providers on the importance of clean/safe healthcare. With this comprehensive approach, we aim to improve health outcomes through the provision of sustainable and high impact maternal and neonatal care.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).