Lack of access to post-abortion care leading to maternal deaths

Ipas Malawi says lack of knowledge on how women can access post-abortion care in health facilities is contributing to high levels of maternal deaths in the country.

Ipas Malawi Program Manager Luke Tembo said this in Mzuzu during a dissemination meeting for District Health Managers from the northern region districts.

Tembo said Ipas Malawi has since launched a one-year project aimed at providing capacity to health centers as well as scaling up sensitization on the dangers of unsafe abortion and how women and girls can access post-abortion care.

“Sensitization needs to be scaled up on unsafe abortions and how women can get post abortion care in hospitals.

“We should also deal with the stigma associated with abortions that leads to women and girls to lose their lives by not seeking post abortion care,” said Tembo.

On his part, Deputy Director of Reproductive Health Directorate in the Ministry of Health Dr. Henry Phiri said post abortion care needs resources in order to reduce the 18 percent of maternal deaths that are reportedly caused by unsafe abortions.

“Unmarried women, youths and adolescents are not getting contraceptives or sexual reproductive health services because of lack of resources and capacity and this leads to them seeking unsafe abortions and endangering their lives,” he said.

During the meeting it was revealed that Mzuzu city and Karonga district have the highest numbers in the region in reported abortion cases.

District Medical, Nursing Officers and senior health officials from Chitipa, Karonga, Likoma, Mzimba, Nkhata Bay and Rumphi districts took part in the post-abortion care standard and guidelines dissemination meeting.

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