Sanwo-Olu vows to put an end to maternal and child mortality

•Unveils new Maternal and Childcare Centre and School of Anesthesia in Badagry •Reveals plans for infrastructural upgrade across all levels of care

Lagos State governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Saturday vowed to do everything within his power to put an end to the twin issue of Maternal and Child Mortality in the state.

The governor gave this vow in Badagry while unveiling a new Maternal and Childcare Centre and the School of Anesthesia located within the premises of Badagry General Hospital, saying that completion of the centre by his administration was a critical indicator of his commitment to eradicating maternal and child mortality.

According to him, it is also in line with his determination to consolidate achievements recorded in improving maternal and child health outcomes.

Sanwo-Olu, who observed that there were disturbing maternal, newborn and child mortality indices, in most developing countries, including Nigeria, vowed that Lagos State would change the narrative under his watch.

“I am immensely proud to be here today to hand over the newly constructed and equipped four-floor 110-bed Maternal and Child Centre, and the School of Anesthetic Studies, Badagry to the people of Badagry.

“Maternal and child mortality is so close to my heart that I am ready to do everything within my personal and official capacity to put an end to it in Lagos State. In most developing countries including Nigeria, there are disturbing maternal, newborn and child mortality indices, but under my watch, Lagos State will change the narrative.

“Through consistent action and smart investments, our women will no longer die while giving life; we will eradicate infant and under-5 mortality in our State,” he vowed.

The governor, while noting that his administration would not pay lip service to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), said concrete action was being taken to ensure that residents had greater access to all they needed for a peaceful and prosperous life in every sphere.

“It is incontrovertible fact that there can be no socio-economic development without healthy citizens; we all know the crucial role of women in the entrenchment of a developed and progressive society – it has, therefore, become imperative to put an end to preventable maternal and child death,” he said.

The governor said the fully equipped Badagry Maternal and Child Centre holds great potential for healthcare delivery, describing it as a one-stop centre for all reproductive issues, including family planning, gynaecology, paediatrics, immunization, obstetrics and emergency services amongst other services.

He disclosed that the facility, since the commencement of operation late December 2020, had recorded 3000 out-patient clinic attendance, adding that 49 normal deliveries and 60 caesarian sections had also been carried out at the centre.

“My excitement is palpable because I know what this means for our integrated health system in Lagos State. With the inauguration of this Maternal and Child Centre, the people of Badagry and adjoining communities now have increased access to quality and safe healthcare, reduction or even complete eradication of maternal and infant mortality as well as a general improvement in all maternal and child health indices in this local government.

“All these benefits will, in turn, have a positive ripple effect on the development of socio-economic indices of Badagry,” Sanwo-Olu stated.

Speaking further, Governor Sanwo-Olu, disclosed that another Maternal and Child Centre in Epe would soon be completed and commissioned, saying that his administration had mapped out a strategy for phased upgrade and revamping of health infrastructure across all levels of care.

He listed some of the public secondary health facilities that had been identified for phased expansion and upgrade to include General Hospital, Lagos; General Hospital, Isolo; Ebute Meta and Harvey Road Health Centres.

The governor also revealed that plans had been concluded to commence the construction of a General Hospital in Ojo, a new Massey Street Children’s Hospital on the Island, a Mental Health Hospital and Rehabilitation Centre in Ketu-Ejirin, as well as an Infectious Disease Centre and Permanent Isolation Centre at Yaba.

On the School of Anesthesia facility upgrade, Sanwo-Olu stated that the school which had trained 133 doctors and 65 nurses validates his administration’s dedication to capacity building and the professional empowerment of the state’s medical workforce.

Sanwo-Olu, while commending and appreciating the health workers in the state for their dedication to duty, promised that his administration would do all it can to make their job easier by equipping and revamping existing hospitals and ensuring that new health facilities lacked no modern equipment.

“With our consistent investment and innovative interventions in quality healthcare delivery, I am confident that Lagos State will continue to take the lead in maternal and child health. The lives of our children and childbearing women will count, our children will survive, our mothers will live and we will have healthy babies and healthy mothers,” Sanwo-Olu assured.

Earlier in his remarks, the State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, assured that the secondary care for women and children which previously depended on the routine health services provided by the Badagry General Hospital would receive a boost with the establishment of the Maternal and Child Centre.

He said that the facility would provide numerous maternal and childcare services, including emergency care, obstetrics, gynaecology, laboratory and blood banking services, radiology, sonography, paediatrics services, family planning, immunization, among others.

Abayomi, who noted that the need for the facility in Badagry was long due, particularly because of the quarter of a million people living in the border axis, averred that the MCC would cater for the maternal and child health needs of riverine communities and islands along with the neighbouring West African states.

“We are proud to commission this facility; the third to be commissioned by the administration of Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Governor of Lagos State.

“Lagos State government is committed to providing the enabling environment and care to all pregnant women during their pregnancies and when they deliver their babies in these facilities,” the commissioner said.

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