COCA-COLA PARTNERS FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ON SAFE BIRTH INITIATIVE, DONATES FOUR TRUCKS LOAD OF EQUIPMENT AND CONSUMABLES TO NATIONAL HOSPITAL ABUJA
In an effort to meet up with their corporate responsibility, the Coca-Cola Nigeria has built up a triangle of partnership with Medshare(a non governmental organization) and the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Developmental Goals(OSSAP-SDGs). The objective is to tackle the high maternal and neonatal mortality rate prevalent in the country. To this end, a programme tagged: “Safe Birth Initiative” was launched at the National Hospital Abuja on the 2nd of November, 2018.
The President Coca-Cola West Africa, Mr Peter Njonjo, while delivering a speech on Maternal and Newborn Mortalities: Why we care, said that about 80% of infant and maternal mortality in Nigeria are preventable if all stakeholders contribute their quota to minimize the trend. He reiterated that this has given a cause for concern and as such, Coca-Cola is committed to the well being of women considering the fact that they are pillars of the society.
Mr Njonjo stated that the Safe Birth Initiative has been structured to help address the inadequacy of lifesaving equipment in public hospitals, and as such the initiative will focus on the procurement of facilities and training of Biomedical Engineers and Technicians respectively. According to him, the implementation of this programme will be carried out in fifteen hospitals under the first phase beginning with ten hospitals.
Giving his attestation, the Chief Medical Director of National Hospital Abuja Dr. JAF. Momoh said that from the inception of the hospital about 19 years ago, it was originally meant for Women and Children but was later changed to National Hospital to serve the whole family. And since then the hospital has been committed to ensure effective service delivery, training, research, and child care.
He added that an average caesarian session in the last ten years is 30% close to average required expectancy by the World Health Organisation. He said again that about 1200 births occur every year of which 30% are through complicated caesarian session. He stated that in the last three years, there was a drastic change in the rate of caesarian session in the hospital because of two mandates, the prevention of mother to child HIV transmission and Referrals from National Health Insurance Scheme. He further explained that in the year 2017, about 1520 births were recorded of which 60% were through caesarian section.
The CMD thanked the Minister of Health, Medshare and Coca-Cola and eulogized the Senior Special Assistant to President on Sustainable Development Goals for this laudable initiative. The equipment and consumables donated by the Coca-Cola will be beneficial to the various departments in the hospital. These include: Ten ICU beds, Four Anesthesia machines(ventilators), Incubators and Resuscitators for pediatrics, Ultrasound machines for Radiology and Multi-parameter patient vital signs monitor for emergencies. He thereafter went round with some dignitaries for a facility tour of all equipment’s donated which were already distributed and put to use in the various departments.
In her remarks the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals, Princess Adejoke Orelope Adefulire said that the office is working hard to provide strategic leadership and guidance in the overall implementation of all the SDG’s in Nigeria.
Princess Adejoke thanked Coca-Cola and added that the Coca-Cola Safe Birth Initiative is directly in line with Sustainable Development Goal 3, which ensures healthy lives and promote well-being for all ages.
She promised to to continue to partner with the private sector to mobilize expertise and financial resources to support the achievement of the SDG’s in Nigeria. She called on other corporate organisations to replicate this kind gesture exhibited by Coca-Cola.
In his keynote address, the Honorable Minister of Health , Professor Isaac Adewole said that the country is in dire need of support to prevent or reduce Maternal Mortality ratio of 576 per 1000 live births and Neonatal Mortality rate of 37 per 1000 live births. He said that to achieve the target currently envisaged by the Global Elimination of Preventable Maternal and Newborn Mortality Initiative by 2030, efforts must be pursued vigorously.
The Minister appreciated Coca-Cola for this timely initiative and urged other corporate organizations to also partner with Government to address this societal ill.