27.09.2005 Regional News

Workers in Upper West Region brainstorm on MDG

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Wa Sept. 27, GNA - Dr George Amofah, Director of Public Health of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), on Monday called for linkages among Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) in efforts to reduce child mortality and promote maternal health in line with the Millennium Development Goals (MDG).

He said, the MDG aimed at reducing child mortality by two-thirds and maternal mortality by three-quarters by 2015 could not be achieved without the collaboration of the MDAs.

Dr Amofah made the call at a five-day Regional Planning workshop on efforts to achieve objectives of the MDG for personnel of the GHS, Public and Civil Servants and other stakeholders in the Upper West Region at Wa.

He said the GHS was determined to reduce the mortality rates of children under five years from 132 per 1,000 births in 1990 to 44 per 1,000 by 2015 and maternal mortality rate from 214 per 100,000 in 1990 to 54 per 100,000 within the same period.

Dr Amofa said with the current rate of efforts by stakeholders, the nation might not achieve the objectives set under the target unless there was a review in the methods being used.

Mr Ambrose Dery, Upper West Regional Minister, said the child and maternal mortality rates in the region was alarming. He said interventions in the health sector alone could not solve the problem because about 60 per cent of deaths of children under five years in the region were through malnutrition therefore, food and nutrition, security and sanitation should form key components of the interventions.

Dr Edward Gyader, Acting Upper West Regional Director of Health Services said non-availability of human resources coupled with the deplorable roads in the region were a hindrance to the achievement of the MDG.

He said due to the absence of ambulances in the region, pregnant women in labour were often transported in pick-ups and cargo trucks from the rural areas to the hospitals for Caesarean section that often led to the deaths of most of them before reaching the hospital.