By Isaac Arkoh, GNA
Cape Coast, Mar 03, GNA – An integrated health record booklet that seeks to significantly raise the quality of maternal and child healthcare has been launched in Cape Coast, by the Second Lady, Mrs. Samira Bawumia.
It addresses issues relating to nutrition, growth monitoring and health education in a more focused and illustrative manner.
The book is the product of the collaboration between the Ghana Health Service (GHS) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
It has been so designed to link the health records of the mother to her child from pregnancy until the child attains the age of five and this forms part of the effort to encourage husbands’ involvement in maternal and child healthcare.
Mrs. Bawumia indicated that Ghana was making good progress in many social development indicators including health.
She, however, acknowledged that despite the significant reduction in the maternal and child mortality rates, the nation missed the target of reducing under-five mortalities to 40 per 1,000 live births and to bring down maternal mortality to 185 per 100,000 live births before the close of year 2015 as set out in the Millennium Development Goals (4 and 5).
According to the 2014 Ghana Demographic and Health Survey report, maternal mortality rate stood at 319 per 100,000 live births with neonatal mortality rate stagnated at 29 per 1,000 live births.
Mrs. Bawumia noted that there were still significant variations in health and nutrition status across the regions with under-nutrition, characterized by stunting and underweight in children, remaining a huge challenge.
She said it was on the basis of this that it was vital to connect essential maternal, newborn, pregnancy and other child health packages until adolescence.
Mr. Kwamena Duncan, the Central Regional Minister, underlined the government’s unwavering to improve maternal and child healthcare.
He applauded Japan for the strong support it was giving to the country’s drive to promote quality healthcare services.