There is an essential need for access to maternal health care to be prioritized towards the advancement of child birth for new mothers in Sub-Saharan Africa, Chief Executive of Vodafone, Patricia Obo-Nai, has said.
According to her, nearly half of pregnant women in Africa are anaemic while growth stunting among children under 5 years is very high among countries.
Speaking at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Obo-Nai urged for women to be empowered with the nutritional knowledge to keep themselves and their children healthy.
“It is heartbreaking, that an expectant mother in sub-Saharan Africa is 50 times likely to die from pregnancy related issues than a woman in Europe. These numbers will certainly increase because of the coronavirus pandemic. In avoiding exposure to the coronavirus, expectant mothers now prefer to give birth at home, where medical complications can be riskier,” she stated.
“Women living in rural areas are often unable to access their nearest health facility when urgent medical intervention is required. While there are eight nurses for every 1,000 people in the UK for example, in South Africa, there are just 1.2 per 1,000 and the gap is even widened in many countries on the continent,” Obo-Nai revealed.
She called for urgent interventions to that offer the nearest access to health care services for women living in rural areas as required.