Ministry of Health has revealed that 225, approved http://cotro.com/wp-includes/class-wp-metadata-lazyloader.php 000 babies in Uganda are born prematurely annually and the country loses 9, salve 800 children under the age of five from complications related to prematurity on an annual basis.
The ministry made the revelation as the country joined the World Prematurity Day on Friday.
Premature babies are those born less than 37 months after the mother’s last menstrual period. Such babies face health risks such as issues with respiratory tract, intellectual disabilities and at times brain damage.
According to the ministry, Prematurity is one of the key causes of newborn mortality and morbidity in Uganda. Complications of prematurity are the leading causes of neonatal mortality and are directly responsible for 38 percent of neonatal deaths.
“The Ministry of health is aware of the alarming numbers of premature births and it has come out with clear goals and objectives to reduce the preventable maternal, newborn and child mortality through evidence – based strategies and actions with stronger focus on districts with low coverage”. The Minister of state for primary health care Hon Dr Joyce Moriku said.
At a press conference on Friday held at the headquarters of Ministry of Health, Hon Moriku said to prevent prematurity, there is a strong need that pregnant mothers attend all required antenatal care visits with the first visit starting in the first trimester.
“It is recommended to have at least four antenatal visits to health facilities so that a mother can receive information care and support to prevent premature births”.
Alcohol consumption, smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, malnutrition, drug abuse, diabetes all increase the risks of giving birth prematurely.
According to World Health Organization 15 million babies are born prematurely around the world.