Simple solutions to save mothers and newborns lives

N’Djamena – 17 February 2017 Ablamti Fanta, 29, sells clothes in the central market of N’Djamena while her two older children, five and nine-year old are in school. Her youngest daughter, Adora Halali, six months, comes to the market with her mother every day.

Yet, on this sunny morning, they have changed the market by the health center to get vaccinated. ”An aunt told me to come here when I got pregnant and I came for consultations until I gave birth. The center is great, women are welcoming and they are taking time to advice mothers who are very young sometimes. They have new equipment and they really respect hygiene here,” she explains.

Roselyne Tallot is managing this urban health center at the outskirts of N’Djamena. ”The revitalization of the center was an excellent opportunity to renew our building, our equipment and materials. But more important, the new work environment has motivated my team and helps them to receive patients. For me, it is essential to be close to them.”

Simple solutions exist to improve access and quality of health services in Chad. Yet, too many mothers and children are still dying. UNICEF, thanks to the support of its partners, facilitates the access to quality health care and is strengthening the health system in Chad. Hundreds of health centers have been revitalized, equipped and their staff trained throughout the country. »

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“During antenatal care visits, I was afraid to be HIV positive and I thought the transmission of HIV/AIDS to the child was inevitable. Finally, the midwives convinced me to do the test and it was negative. Now, I understand how it works!” She says proudly, while adding that antenatal care visits have also helped her to understand how to take care of her children. “Some women do not believe vaccines work and neglect the health of their children. I know that if I respect the calendar of vaccinations, my child will be protected, “ she says with confidence.

In Chad, infant and maternal mortality rates remain among the highest in the world. According to the latest available statistics, maternal mortality rate is 861 deaths per 100,000 live births (MICS 2014). Only one in three women are giving birth assisted by qualified healthcare personnel. Infant mortality is just as worrying, one in seven children do not reach their fifth birthday.

Roselyne Tallot is proud of the results they are achieving at the center.  “Every month, we assist one hundred and fifty births, more than seven hundred antenatal consultations and two hundred HIV/AIDS tests. The situation is harsh but my staff is fearless and together we are facing the daily challenges.”

Their efforts are worth it and mothers are satisfied with the services provided. “I had difficulties giving birth because she came with the feet first, but the nurses reacted quickly. They called the ambulance to pick me up and I was transferred to the Mother and Child Hospital. Finally, everything went well and my daughter is super healthy,” concludes Ablamti, joyful.

Thanks to the generous contributions of its donors, UNICEF and partners are focused on delivering continued programming interventions while building capacity at the local level to reach the most vulnerable populations in need of health services. The goal is to leave no child behind and achieve universal access to quality health services for every child.

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