The Network for Maternal and Newborn Child Health Initiative (NMNCHI), a Civil Society Organisation (CSO), has appealed to the Gombe State Government to revive free antenatal services.
Malam Alhassan Yahaya, the Chairman of the group, made the call during an advocacy visit to the newly appointed Executive Secretary of Gombe State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SPHCDA), Dr Abdulrahman Shuaibu.
Yahaya said revitalising policy would address the poor indices of the state in terms of maternal and neonatal child mortality, which is among the worst in the country.
He recalled that previous administrations in the state supported the free antenatal service for women from conception of pregnancy up to delivery, even if it is through caesarean section.
According to him, the programme was suspended three years ago during the second term of former governor Ibrahim Dankwambo.
He noted that the programme touched so many lives particularly the less privileged who cannot afford hospital bills when it was initiated by ex-governor Danjuma Goje.
He therefore called on Gov. Inuwa Yahaya to revive the programme because it will go a long way in reducing the maternal and under-5 mortality in the state.
He explained that the aim of their visit was to familiarise themselves with the new executive secretary and also share ideas towards reducing and improving maternal mortality in the state.
Responding, Shuaibu commended the good work the network had been doing and solicited for a robust collaboration with the CSOs to complement the efforts of the agency.
He acknowledged the huge impact made by the Village Health Workers scheme and called for its sustenance to redress the poor mortality health indices of the state.
Edited by Muhammad Suleiman Tola