Maternal Mortality: Osun Govt Unveils Policy Document on Safe Pregnancy Termination

Maternal Mortality: Osun Govt Unveils Policy Document on Safe Pregnancy Termination

Governor’s Aide Calls for Media Collaboration on Information Dissemination of the Policy Document

Development Partner Calls for Collaboration of Critical Stakeholders On Effective Implementation of the Document

By Oluniyi Isamotu

The Osun State government has officially unveiled a ‘policy document on safe termination of pregnancy and its legal indications’ in the state.

Representing the state government at the official unveiling of the policy document is the Special Adviser on Public Health to the Executive Governor of Osun, Dr Akindele Adekunle.

Dr. Akindele said the document is aimed at improving healthcare delivery services across the state, especially as it concerns the mother and child healthcare challenges.

” Nigeria is now ranked as having the second largest burden of maternal mortality in the world, after India. Most of these deaths are of known causes and are preventable. As Nigeria aligns with the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) efforts at eliminating all preventable maternal deaths by 2030, every effort must henceforth be made to identify and prevent every prevalent preventable cause of maternal deaths”

“Moreso, one major cause of preventable maternal deaths in Osun State is unsafe abortion. Therefore, this policy document for Osun State is intended to build the capacity of medical professionals to identify pregnancies for which the law is intended so that ethical and safe management can be instituted,” Dr Akindele stated at the unveiling of the policy document

The Governor’s Aide thereafter call for support from media stakeholders to ensure proper dissemination of the policy document and guidelines to the public for the benefit of the society as he affirmed that “the dissemination of this important policy document will improve on the provision of quality Reproductive Health services to the women of child-bearing age thereby improving the health status of the State.”

Onbehalf of the government, Dr Akindele commended the development partner
“MSI Reproductive Choices (Mariestopes Organisation)” for their commitment to the domestication of this National policy document in the State while equally acknowledging all the critical stakeholders both in the health and legal sectors, as well as security officers who participated in achieving the feat of producing and unveiling of the policy document.

Dr. Emmanuel Ajah, the Country Director of MSI Nigeria Reproductive Choices, who are the lead development partner collaborating with the state government on the production of the policy document calls for collaboration of critical stakeholders on effective implementation of the document.

He stressed the significance of ensuring that healthcare providers understand the legal indications for safe termination of pregnancy.

” I call on all stakeholders to support the Government in the dissemination and implementation of this guideline to ensure that every woman gets the right care she deserves at the right time and place because having a guideline on safe termination of pregnancy for legal indications is of extreme importance to control the unnecessary death of women who lose their lives from conditions that are aggravated by the continuation of pregnancy.”

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Isiaka Adekunle clarified that the domestication of the policy in Osun state does not equate to the legalization of abortion in the state, stressing that abortion remains illegal.

He appreciated the leadership of the State Ministry of Health (SMOH) in collaboration with Marie Stopes International Nigeria Reproductive Choices (MSIN), Society of Gynecology and Obstetrics of Nigeria (SOGON), The Challenge Initiative (TCI), and other key stakeholders for the success of the policy document unveiling.

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