Ghana is unlikely to meet MDG on maternal health, infant mortality - CHRAJ
5/11/2012 2:30:19 PM -
Wa, May 11, GNA - Ghana is unlikely to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target of 185 per 100,000 live births by 2015 unless pragmatic steps are taken to speed up the pace of maternal health interventions in the country, says the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ).
According to the Commission, in spite of the several interventions initiated by the government to achieve MDG Five which was set to reduce by three-quarters the maternal mortality ratio by 2015, progress seems to be very slow.
This was contained in the highlights of the Commission's 2011 Report on the State of Human Rights in Ghana.
The report stated that maternal mortality ratio in the country had improved marginally from 560 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2003 to 451 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births in 2008.
Analytically, the report said if the current trend continued, maternal mortality would reduce approximately to 340 per 100,000 live births by the set date of 2015 which would be impossible for Ghana to meet the set target of 185 per 100,000 live births.
On infant mortality, the CHRAJ report noted that the 2008 Ghana Millennium Development Goals Report pointed to evidence showing that there had been significant reduction in both infant and under-five mortality rates in recent times.
It said it would be unlikely that the 2015 target of reducing child mortality rates would be achieved unless there was an effort to scale-up and sustain the recent child survival interventions which had brought about the current improvement.
The Commission therefore called for more concerted efforts aimed at achieving the MDGs on infant health.
CHRAJ also recommended that any payments made by Persons Living With HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) for access to medication be waived to enable them collect their medications without being embarrassed by their inability to pay.
This became necessary after the Commission's interactions with some PLWHA in the Upper East Region revealed that the indigent among them could not pay the minimum fee of GH¢5.00 before collecting their medication.
The Commission while calling for more awareness and sensitization of the public to reduce further the spread of HIV/AIDS in the county also warned against stigmatization and discrimination against PLWHA.
It further called for the effective management of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to ensure that the poor and vulnerable persons benefited fully from the scheme instead of the delays experienced by card bearing members at health facilities.