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Solidarity together

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MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH

Today, 97% of maternal and infant deaths occur in 68 countries in the southern hemisphere ? that is, 10 million mothers and children die each year from preventable and curable causes.

These deaths are particularly concentrated in Asia and sub-Saharan Africa, a region where 50% of infant and maternal deaths occur.

The Rescue & Recover Fund supports its partner associations in several fields.

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  • Infant mortality in Mali

Médecins Sans Frontières operates in Mali by providing comprehensive paediatric care for the cure and prevention of the major deadly conditions affecting early childhood.

These activities are complemented by the training of community health workers who diagnose and deliver simple treatments for malaria in the villages, as near as possible to the patients.

These preventive measures have proved effective, with the goal now being to reduce the cost of these measures so they can be extended to other health centres.

  • Maternity in Pakistan

The Peshawar region, in the tribal areas, is particularly unstable. The violence is causing massive displacements of populations in the north-west of the country. Access to quality healthcare is very difficult there, with the maternal and infant mortality rates among the highest in Central Asia.

In 2011, MSF opened a hospital specialising in gynaecology and obstetrics in Peshawar, dedicated entirely to the most vulnerable women (refugees, women displaced from the border tribal areas of Afghanistan or women from Peshawar and its surroundings), so that they can have access to free, high-quality gynaeco-obstetrics care around the clock. A mobile team informs communities about the care services available. This hospital has 30 inpatient beds for mothers and 18 in the neo-natal unit which supports seriously ill newborns, an operating block, a laboratory with a blood bank, and an emergency consulting room.

Through this project, MSF is contributing to the reduction in maternal mortality.

  • Mamans Lumière in Niger

In Niger, CARE took part in the fight against malnutrition following the example of the Mamans Lumière from 2012 to 2015: thanks to the mothers of healthy children, good practices in relation to nutrition and hygiene were disseminated.

The association's actions and successes in the field:

- Training and equipment for members of community structures on the management of malnutrition, including four days of workshops on malnutrition for 155 members of community structures. In total, over 115,200 people received awareness-raising information on behavioural change.

    - Purchase and provision of 54.6 tonnes of food in the villages.

    - Care for malnourished children through equipped learning centres (70% recovery rate).

    - Screening of around 25,000 cases of malnutrition and management of more than 1,640 cases of moderate malnutrition out of the 3,247 identified.

    - Establishment of 208 savings and credit groupings.

    This project has been successful in combating acute malnutrition in children aged 6 to 59 months (from 15.5% before the project to 13%).

  • Mother and child health in Ivory Coast

The department of San Pedro, in the south-west of the Ivory Coast, is the second most important economic zone after Abidjan. The Bardot slum is home to around 70% of the population of San Pedro, housing vulnerable populations of workers, unemployed people and farmers.

The needs of these populations in relation to healthcare are of concern. However, attendance at community healthcare establishments is steadily declining.

The Rescue & Recover Fund supports CARE in its project to improve the quality of care for the most vulnerable in the Bardot district through actions such as:

    - increasing the capacities of community health workers;

    - awareness-raising in the community on the importance of attending healthcare facilities;

    - participatory method to better adapt services to patients' needs;

    - establishment of community committees for the development of neighbourhoods for the quality of life (health, sanitation, hygiene, education, culture, solidarity).

    As a result of this project, healthcare establishments have seen their attendance - as well as the rates of assisted deliveries - increase.