The Upper West Regional Director of Ghana Health Service Dr Osei Kuffour Afreh has revealed that, institutional neonatal mortality ratio continues to increase from 6.1/1000 livebirths to 8.6/1000 livebirths. This death, he said resulted from birth asphyxia, prematurity and sepsis.
The Director futher indicated the lack of Paediatrician in the region as a contributing factor to the problem. He noted that, steps are been taken by GHS in partnership with UNICEF to address the death of new-born babies.
Meanwhile Dr Osei Afreh said, the ratio of maternal mortality has reduced from 100.8/100,000 livebirths to 74/100,000 livebirths. This achievement he attributed to capacity building of health staff, improvement in antenatal service and establishment of maternal death task force.
He made these known at the 2019 Upper West Regional health performance review meeting held in Wa, the regional capital of the Upper West Region. The meeting was held under the theme; “Improving maternal and new-born care through quality healthcare delivery”.
On his part, Deputy Upper West Regional Minister, Hon. Amidu Issahaku Chinnia said, considering the rate at which neonatal mortality continues to increase from 2018 to 2019, it calls for concern among stakeholders to come together to help address the issue.
Hon Chinnia commended the Ghana Health Service for the slight improvement in maternal mortality rate in the Region.
However, Deputy Director General of the Ghana Health Services Dr Anthony Ofosu charged the Upper West Regional health directorate to continue to work hard in reducing neonatal mortality in the Region.