Rwanda’s Maternal and Child Health Week delivers preventative measures to ensure good health, growth and survival
From 26 to 29 April 2016, Rwanda’s Ministry of Health, in partnership with the Office of the First Lady, and through Imbuto Foundation, held a ‘Maternal and Child Health Week’. An official opening ceremony was held in Kageyo sector, Gicumbi District to launch the campaign which was focused on sustaining maternal health and child health, nutrition, reproductive health and fighting malaria.
At the event, the Ministry of Health, in partnership with the Office of the First Lady, pledged to use best practices and behaviours, building on achievements in the field of immunisation as an entry point, to continue protecting mothers and their children from malaria, malnutrition, and issues affecting their sexual reproductive health.
“During that week we promote antenatal consultations and teach mothers how to recognise risks during pregnancy. An integrated package of interventions for prevention for maternal and child death and sensitisation on family planning is shared. These weeks are also an occasion to raise awareness on breastfeeding, the fight against HIV/AIDS, vaccination, community health insurance, hygiene, and nutrition,” Rwanda’s First Lady, Jeannette Kagame.
The week was used to deliver integrated packages of preventative measures to improve maternal and child health, ensure their good health, growth development and above all survival. Sensitization and awareness programmes were rolled out on malaria prevention and control, nutrition, especially for pregnant and lactating mothers, and children below the age of two years.
During the campaign, children between one and 15 years were dewormed, and vitamin A was administered to children from 6-59 months. At the launch event, the State Minister in charge of Public Health and Primary Health Care, Dr Patrick Ndimubanzi, said four million children will be dewormed while 1.5 million across the country will be given vitamin A tablets during the course of the drive.
Through its Maternal New Born and Child Health Project (MNCH), World Vision Rwanda carried out a number of health interventions under their Maternal and Newborn Child Health Project including sensitization and awareness on malaria prevention and control, nutrition, especially for pregnant and lactating mothers, and children below the age of two years, sensitization and promotion of better hygiene practices in order to prevent poor hygiene related diseases,sensitization, raising awareness, promoting family planning through Health and Timely Spacing Pregnancy Model.