Save The Newborn

August 1st, 2009 healthwiki Child Health,Pregnancy 0

The death of a newborn is a very painful experience for the mothers who have taken the ordeal of pregnancy for 9 months or so. The causes of newborn death in Bangladesh are manifold like poverty, lack of medical check up, home delivery etc.

Bangladesh has one of the highest newborn deaths in the world. It is about 37 per thousand live births per year. Nearly 4 million babies die after delivery each year throughout the world out of which 98% die in developing countries including Bangladesh. Out of total deaths 45% die within first four weeks of life and 30% die within one year.

In order to decrease this huge number of deaths every year, a pragmatic coordinated approach is needed by all concerned, it is not possible for the government to solve this gigantic problem all alone, both government and non governmental organisations should make every effort in a combined way to mitigate this human tragedy.

MDG-5 is to reduce child mortality by two thirrd by the year 2015. It is heartening to note that the under 5 mortality in Bangladesh has come down significantly in the last decade, from 88 to 66 per 1000 live births per year.

But the main contributing factor affecting the high under-5 mortality is the bulk of the new born deaths that occur within the first 28 days of life. So it is imperative that we need to address the problems that affect the new born deaths more seriously in a coordinated way at the grass root level i.e. in the non urban areas, where a large proportion of deliveries take place in the home setting, compounded by meager medical facilities and man power within the vicinity.

We all know that the main cause of newborn death in Bangladesh is home delivery, lack of trained personals and medical facilities, delayed referral, transportation problem etc. To address these problems the most important thing is to produce skilled birth attendants (SBA) who will be trained to do the following things:

1) Conduct normal deliveries
2) Identify the danger signs
3) Quick referral and transportation to higher centers

At the same time we should put emphasis on:
1) Improve obstetric and neonatal care at thana and district level
2) Control population boom
3) Compulsory birth and marriage registration
4) Improve women education
In a country like Bangladesh institutional delivery is not possible, we need to utilise our human resources by producing more SBA’s in order to bring down neonatal mortality.

This is a huge task which needs to be jointly addressed by all.