Maternal mortality: Osun unveils policy document on safe termination of pregnancy

The Osun State Government has officially unveiled a policy document on safe termination of pregnancy and its legal indications in the state.

The policy, according the state government, is aimed at improving healthcare delivery services across the state, especially as it concerned mother and child healthcare challenges.

Dr Akindele Adekunle, the Special Adviser on Public Health to Governor Ademola Adeleke, unveiled the policy document in Osogbo.

Adekunle, who revealed that Nigeria was ranked as having the second largest burden of maternal mortality in the world after India, added that most of the deaths had known causes and were preventable.

“Nigeria is now ranked as having the second largest burden of maternal mortality in the world, after India. Most of these deaths are of known causes and are preventable.

“As Nigeria aligns with the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) efforts at eliminating all preventable maternal deaths by 2030, every effort must henceforth be made to identify and prevent every prevalent preventable cause of maternal deaths.

“Moreso, one major cause of preventable maternal deaths in Osun State is unsafe abortion. Therefore, this policy document for Osun State is intended to build the capacity of medical professionals to identify pregnancies for which the law is intended so that ethical and safe management can be instituted,” he said.

Adekunle called for support from media stakeholders to ensure proper dissemination of the policy document and guidelines to the public, for the benefit of the society.

“The dissemination of this important policy document will improve on the provision of quality Reproductive Health services to the women of child-bearing age thereby improving the health status of the state.”

Dr Emmanuel Ajah, the Country Director of MSI Nigeria Reproductive Choices, the lead development partner collaborating with the state government on the production of the policy document, called for collaboration of critical stakeholders on effective implementation of the document.

He stressed the significance of ensuring that healthcare providers understand the legal indications for safe termination of pregnancy.

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