The Association of Fetomaternal Medicine Specialists of Nigeria (AFEMSON), has appealed to the Federal Government to establish dedicated maternal and newborn referral hospitals in all the geo-political zones of the country.
The outgoing President of the association, Prof. Saturday Etuk, made the appeal in a communique read at the end of the sixth scientific conference of the association in Abuja on Saturday.
The association decried the lack of these maternal referral hospitals in the country, saying that with them, it would be easy to manage high risk pregnancies and deliveries.
It said that there was rising spate of rhesus isoimmunization and sensitisation among women in Nigeria on the background of the high cost of anti-immunoglobin.
The association disclosed that there is also low a level of skilled health personnel at primary and secondary health care levels, leading to high maternal and new born death.
AFEMSON called for training and retraining of health personnel in the conduct of implementation of science research.
According to it, there has been poor translation of research outputs on maternal and newborn children into clinical practice in Nigeria.
It said that the government must be courageous to establish dedicated maternal and newborn referral hospitals in all the geopolitical zones.
The association also called for increased awareness about rhesus isoimmunization and the accompanying dangers for women of child bearing age, including the girl child.
It said that government must also ensure appropriate staffing and the sustenance of such personalities at both primary and secondary health care levels.
The association said that appropriate staffing of health workers would curtail significantly, the burden of maternal and newborn child morbidity and mortality.
“Government and the private sector, through their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), are to support the provision of further training of researchers in the conduct of implementation of science research.
“There is need for collaboration of relevant stakeholders with research institutions in the translation of research findings into clinical practice as most of the specialised research findings in maternal and child health are lying in the shelves of the Universities.
“We sincerely believe that if the government implements these recommendations, it will bring down the death rate of maternal and newborn babies across the country in line with sustainable development goal agenda,” it said.
The association, however, appreciated the contribution of all those who were present at the scientific conference, including invited guests and speakers.