The New Times (Kigali)

Rwanda: Prenatal and Postnatal Care Will Reduce Mother and Child Mortality

Child Bearing Poses Health Risks for Women Worldwide, Especially Those in the World's Least Developed Countries Who Are 300 Times More Likely to Die During Child Birth When Compared to Those in the Developed World.

This is derived from the fact that fewer women in the developing world access prenatal and postnatal checkups.

Rwanda is not an exception: Inability to access prenatal and postnatal care-which is a necessary prerequisite to a safe delivery - is among the causes of death during child birth in Rwanda.

To overcome this challenge, massive mobilization and sensitization campaigns must be conducted countrywide.

Raising awareness is the first-step towards ensuring safe childbirth. Sensitization will equip mothers, fathers and young people with the basic education they need to raise healthy children-children who will no longer die as a result of poor nutrition, negligence and malaria, which are all preventable.

Meeting Millennium Development Goal #5 - improving the lives of girls and women within our societies - has become one of Rwanda's top priorities.

On its part, the leadership has pledged to fight maternal and infant mortality through increasing health sector spending. Rwanda is increasing its health sector spending from 10.9 to 15 percent by 2012.

A portion of this budget should be dedicated to sensitizing the Rwandan public about prenatal and postnatal care.

That way, MDG 5, will be achieved, the population will be healthier and without doubt more productive.

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