Ambulances Raise Hope for Expectant Mothers in Karamoja

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In short
Maternal and newborn mortality remains a global challenge and more so, an area of concern for Uganda where women and newborns continue to die from preventable causes. Uganda has also recorded slow progress in averting maternal and newborn mortality specifically in hard-to-reach areas and among vulnerable populations living in Karamoja.

Expectant mothers in districts of Amudat, Kotido and Napak can now quickly access life-saving services thanks to a donation of ambulances by UNICEF and the Korean International Cooperation Agency.

The support is part of the four-year UNICEF-KOICA partnership launched last year focusing on strengthening the continuum of care for maternal, newborn and child health services, by addressing the three delays that are responsible for maternal and new-born deaths.

The four-year partnership which cost 8,552,020 USD dollars (approximately 28 billion Shillings) will target more than 100,000 pregnant women, over 15,000 pregnant women presenting with labour complications, and 100,000 children under five, including newborns.

The project is being implemented in seven districts of the Karamoja region - Abim, Amudat, Kaabong, Kotido, Moroto, Napak and Nakapiripirit.

Maternal and newborn mortality remains a global challenge and more so, an area of concern for Uganda where women and newborns continue to die from preventable causes. Uganda has also recorded slow progress in averting maternal and newborn mortality specifically in hard-to-reach areas and among vulnerable populations living in Karamoja.

The Karamoja region still registers poor indicators with an estimated 750 deaths per every 100,000 live births. The national maternal mortality ratio is 438 per 100,000 live births.

UNICEF's Representative to Uganda Aida Girma handed over the ambulances to the district leadership of Amudat, Kotido and Napak at a ceremony in Moroto.

"The ambulances provided today are timely and will address the second delay which occurs at the community level before reaching the health facility," Aida Girma, UNICEF's Representative to Uganda said at a hand over ceremony of the ambulances in Moroto today.

"The delays bar pregnant women from accessing life-saving services in time," she added.

 

About the author

Sylvia Nankya
Sylvia is an Editor and Media Trainer with Uganda Radio Network. She has been a URN staff member since 2013. Sylvia has previously worked as a reporter and news anchor with Radio One (2001-2009) and with Vision Group (2009-2011). Six of her active years in Journalism were spent covering the Parliament of Uganda.

Over the past few years, Sylvia has worked to promote the positive development of societies recovering from conflict through training journalists on choices of stories, how they report issues and use of appropriate language in covering conflict and post-conflict situations.

She is an Alumni of RNTC- Holland, Les Aspin Centre for Government at Marquette University-WI, USA and a Community Solutions Fellow.