Free Medicare for pregnant women not license for more births- Djan
Women have been cautioned against abusing the free medical care for pregnant women programme as an opportunity to produce more children.
Mr Paul L.K. Djan, Central regional Population Officer, who gave the advice said, the free medical care was an intervention to facilitate the achievement of the fourth and fifth objectives of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and not to increase population.
Addressing the Gomoa West district Population Advisory Committee (DPAC) at Apam on Tuesday, Mr Djan explained that whilst the fourth of the MDGs aims at reducing child mortality, the fifth was for improving maternal health.
He appealed to District, Municipal and Metropolitan assemblies to support DPACs to perform effectively since health and population issues were related.
The Regional Population Officer pointed out that the Assemblies could not talk about improving the health of the people and “play down population issues.”
Ms Patricia Antwi, District Director of Health Services, expressed her worry about the low patronage of child delivery at health facilities in the area.
She said records indicated that only 35 per cent of deliveries in the District took place at health facilities, while as much as 65 per cent were delivered at homes.
Ms Antwi appealed to the DPAC to make the problem one of their main concerns.
Mr Dramani Mahama, Deputy Central Regional Population Officer said it was necessary for couples, especially the women to have a say in on issues concerning childbirth.
Ms Joyce Aidoo, District Chief Executive (DCE) called on the DPAC to come out with programmes that would enhance the lives of disadvantaged women, the physically challenged and the aged and pledged the Assembly's readiness to support such programmes.
Mr Eric Akobeng, District HIV/AIDS Focal Person reminded members of the committee that the disease was one of the greatest population problems facing the nation and urged them to make it one of their priorities.
Mr Fred Oscar Abban, the Presiding Member of the Assembly, who chaired the function, expressed his worry about the high rate of teenage pregnancies in the District and appealed to the DPAC to intensify public education to turn the tide.