By Mustapha Yauri
The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole, has inaugurated Inter-Ministerial Committee on the establishment of the National Obstetric Fistula Centres in Nigeria towards ensuring the reduction of Obstetric Fistula cases.
Mrs Boade Akinola, Director, Media and Public Relations of the Ministry made this known in a statement issued on Tuesday in Abuja.
Akinola said the Federal Government had designated three (3) facilities located in Kaduna, Bauchi and Ebonyi States as National Obstetric Fistula centres for prevention, treatment, training and research.
She quoted Adewole as saying that the National Centres were expected to provide technical backstopping as well as act as referral centres to the several health facilities where fistula cases were diagnosed in the six geopolitical zones.
“To this end, new centres would be located in Adamawa, Edo, Niger, Osun and Oyo states; with Oyo State site serving as a Regional centre.
‘’The prevention and treatment of obstetric fistula was a priority of the Federal Government.
“Consequently, the establishment of more Obstetric Fistula Centres demonstrate government’s commitment to the improvement of the maternal and reproductive health indices,” he said.
The minister said government was working relentlessly to ensure availability of functional Primary Health Care centres, skilled birth attendants, as some of the preventive measures against obstetric fistula.
According to Adewole, government would also ensure adequate supply of essential maternal health commodities for the provision of quality antenatal care, safe delivery and postnatal care for women and children.
The minister urged the committee to come up with recommendations, strategies, interventions and roll-out plans for the establishment of the centres in addition to facilitating funding for the projects.
The Committee’s Chairman, Mr Abdulaziz Abudullahi, assured that the committee would do its best in achieving the terms of reference and duly submit its report on time.
Abdullahi, who is also the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, also pledged that the committee would work assiduously to deliver on their assignment.
The Director, Family Health, Dr Adebimpe Adebiyi, said that Obstetric Fistula was a serious and prevalent reproductive health challenge for women in the developing world.
Adebiyi said Nigeria bore about 40 per cent of the global burden. (NAN)