Motherhood is celebrated as one of the most extraordinary times in a woman's life. But the reality in Bangladesh is striking.
With only 13 percent of women delivering their babies with skilled attendants present, the country reports one of the highest maternal mortality rates (320 per 100,000) and infant mortality rates (52 per 1,000) in Asia.
Safe motherhood is not only vital to avoid untimely and painful maternal and child deaths, but also to nurture a healthy and prosperous nation. As a result, reducing infant mortality and improving maternal health have been identified as two of the United Nations’ eight millennium development goals.
Grameenphone’s Safe Motherhood & Infant Care Project is designed to ensure free yet quality safe motherhood and infant care services to poor mothers and their infants throughout the country. It also aims to assist in necessary infrastructure development and the expansion of basic healthcare services, especially in the hard-to-reach and remote areas.
How it Works:
In partnership with Pathfinder International and through USAID’s network of Smiling Sun clinics in 61 districts, free primary healthcare services are being provided by health professionals via 318 static clinics, 8000 satellite clinics and 6000 community-based health-workers across the country. In addition, Grameenphone has introduced clinics-on-wheels (i.e. mobile mini-hospital) to complement these existing service touch-points, in order to enhance the accessibility of services in remote areas.
- A total of 1,703,767 (up to September 2010) maternal and child care services provided to economically disadvantaged mothers and infants. Patiya and Bhola clinics at the coastal belt are being upgraded to emergency obstetric care centers.
- 10 motorized vans are being provided to facilitate better patients’ referral and home delivery (HD) services by skilled birth attendants (SBA).
- Four clinics-on-wheels are used to increase the accessibility of services in the hard-to-reach areas.