Dr Charles Agugua, a gynaecologist with a private hospital in Abuja has identified poverty as a major cause of maternal and child mortality in Nigeria.
Agugua said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja on Sunday.
He expressed concern that poverty had prevented many women from getting proper and adequate medical attention as well as good antenatal care.
The gynaecologist also identified poverty as a major barrier to human development, noting that high level poverty had limited people’s bid, especially women to have access to quality health care.
He said that more than 70 percent of maternal deaths in Nigerwe due to five major complications: hemorrhage, infection, unsafe abortion, hypertensive arising from pregnancy and obstructed labour.
”The consequence of this is the uncaring attitude of many health care providers in the context of maternal care.
”The ethics of medical care emphasises the need to show care to vulnerable patients, irrespective of their socio-economic status.
‘’This will enhance quality care and foster good relationships between health care providers and their patients,” he said.
Agugua said that the relationship between poverty and maternal mortality called for the need to address the reproductive health problem of the country.
He called for focused strategy that would enable pregnant women with complications have access to the medical interventions of emergency obstetrical care.
The expert also called for the upgrading of rural health centres and referral hospitals and stocked them with the necessary drugs and equipment to boost their effort in caring out obstetrical services.
He also stressed the need to train health workers and develop strong referral systems between communities and health care facilities to check delays in cases that posed threat to life.
”A referral system includes means of communication and transport as well as mechanisms for ensuring that referral facilities are able to provide services at all hours.”
Agugua also advised government to establish supportive policies that would help the system work better and faster. (NAN)