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Reps canvass free healthcare for pregnant women, new mothers

Reps canvass free healthcare for pregnant women, new mothers
May 22
19:51 2024

The house of representatives has asked the federal ministry of health to direct public healthcare institutions to provide free medical treatment to pregnant women and new mothers in the country.

The lower legislative chamber passed the resolution during the plenary on Wednesday after the adoption of a motion moved by Mohammed Shehu from Bauchi state.

Shehu said the government makes a budget every year for public healthcare institutions to fund medical services for citizens, particularly pregnant women whose families cannot afford the bills during pregnancy and childbirth.

The legislator said Nigeria is “grappling with high disease rates, resulting in an annual maternal mortality rate of expectant mothers and children due to pregnancy complications and the polio virus”.

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“Government neglect requires public healthcare institutions to have medical professionals give adequate attention to patients, including pregnant women, during childbirth to address complications and find permanent solutions,” he added.

Shehu said the government should prioritise policy actions aimed at improving healthcare delivery systems, particularly for pregnant women, to alleviate their hardships and boost their confidence.

The lawmaker said free medical treatment for pregnant women will boost the country’s fertility rate.

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The motion was unanimously adopted when it was put to a voice vote by Ben Kalu, the deputy speaker, who presided over the plenary.

Consequently, the house asked the ministry of health to “issue directives enabling free medical treatment for pregnant women during and after delivery in public healthcare institutions and implement routine checks to ensure continuity, compliance by medical personnel, and sustainability of childbirth processes”.

The green chamber also resolved to invite the minister of health to “propose a solution” to the increasing rate of death during childbirth.

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