The Principal, National School of Midwifery, Dr. Joan Shepherd disclosed that the Ministry of Health has an annual event where they send their midwives to give community services, targeting pregnant women, lactating mothers and new-born babies.
She informed her audience that the student midwives are in their final year and every year they go to the community to begin to prepare themselves for their future roles and responsibilities as midwives.
Dr. Shepherd reiterated that the community outreach programme is a free-midwifery fair that complements government’s free health care initiative targeting pregnant women, lactating mothers and new-born babies through delivery of quality, respectful midwifery services. She added that the rationale behind is that women are in the remote urban communities and they suffers from complications, adding that because they are training professional midwives, they want them to have a field of how it is to work as midwives in the community.
She told the gathering that they are targeting these categories because they want to prevent unnecessary deaths as the maternal mortality situation for Sierra Leone is very sad, adding that in their own way at the National School of Midwifery in collaboration with the Ministry of Health want to come together and see how best they can reduce these alarming figures.
Dr. Joan Shepherd stated that all pregnant women have the opportunity to access free affordable health services which is offered free of cost, and is important for them to come to the clinics, because they have trained professionals midwives who will be able to assess and treat them for minor ailments and referred when necessary. She appealed to pregnant women in the community not to deliver at home but to come to the nearest health facility to receive antenatal care, early detection and treatment, and prevention of complications.
Representing the Hamilton Headman, the Secretary, Facility Management Committee, Simbo Conteh thanked the National School of Midwifery for the wonderful initiative especially for pregnant women, lactating mothers and new-born, hoping that the targeted beneficiaries will make good use of the great opportunity.
He appealed to them to pass on the knowledge gained to those that were absent during the event.
Kumba Kargbo, a Traditional Birth Attendant at Hamilton Village joined other speakers to thank the National School of Midwifery for the programme and called on pregnant women to always visit the nearest health facilities so that they will receive quality examination and monitored until they deliver safely.
Other highlights of the event include Health talks, History taking, Antenatal care, food displays, general assessment, treatment of minor ailments and distribution of baby packs