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신생아와 산모를 위한 케냐의 지원 프로그램

2008.01.18

* In Kenya, working to better conditions for mothers and newborns
* 03 min 33 secs
* 31 Aug 2007

Winds of change are blowing through Kenya. With presidential elections recent progress in child and maternal survival has set the benchmark for the country’s new leaders.

Far from the political rallies and electioneering life goes on, women give birth, babies are born. Now thanks to mass distribution of insecticide treated bed nets, free healthcare for children under 5, mobile clinics and the recent waiver of maternity fees at community health centers, more Kenyan babies are getting a better start in life.

To keep up this momentum, UNICEF has launched the ‘Lookout for leaders who look out for children’ campaign. The campaign challenges candidates to commit themselves in writing to survival, health, education and the right to equality and protection for all Kenyan children. Several candidates have already signed up.

In the district of Kwale, south of Mombasa, many are too poor to give birth in government hospitals, and until recently, the only other option was a home birth – far away from clinics and medication, a dangerous undertaking for both mother and child.

In July 2007, the Kenyan Ministry of Health waived maternity fees in the country’s health centres and public dispensaries. With maternity fees ranging from KSh300 to KSh800, professional health services are now accessible to those who can not afford to pay

SOUNDBITE: Mwana-hamisi Matana of Kirudi Village  “Having a baby in hospital in this day and age of AIDS is actually safer because both mother and baby can get treatment, rather than at home where you just cut the umbilical cord with a tool that is not safe and end up having different dieases coming in.”

But few people in rural areas like Kwale know about the maternity fee waiver. With 60% of pregnant women turning to unskilled Traditional Birth Attendants during home births, health professionals are partnering with community based workers and volunteers to spread the good news.

SOUNDBITE: Halima Hassan, Nursing Officer, Tiwi Rural Health Training Center  ‘We used to deliver around 45 to 50 mothers per month, but right now we’ve increased our cases of delivery and we’re reaching up to 60”

For those who had scraped enough money together to pay the delivery fees at a health centre, the waiver is nothing short of a blessing.

SOUNDBITE: Miriam Awor, 22 “I’ll buy new clothes for my baby and food for my other children who are at home”

In a country where 1 in every 30 newborns die within the first month, more needs to be done. Women must have access to both ante-natal and post-natal services such as HIV testing and counselling, pr

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