Six health facilities in remote areas in Gulu district that were operating without electricity will soon benefit from a donation of six solar power suitcases meant to facilitate deliveries and other medical services in the health centers at night.
The solar panels which were donated by Save the Children Uganda will be given to Labworomor HC111,Awor HC11,Oitino HC11, Bobi HC, Lukwi HC11 and Pawel angayi HC11 that are all in hard to reach areas without electricity but conduct regular health deliveries.
Paul Onek, the Gulu district health officer, says that it has been a challenge for doctors and midwives to conduct deliveries in the health centers in the night.
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Many health officials in Acholi have been conducting deliveries using torches and candles in places with no electricity.
Margaret Nabakooba, the programs manager, of saving new born lives program with Save the children said that the major reason for donating the solar is to reduce the infant mortality rate. She said in many cases babies have passed on because of poor handling in the health facilities stating that the lighting systems which can lust for up to 5 years will greatly help the health facilities.
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During a meeting on 13th February 2014 convened by White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood Uganda (WRA Uganda) with Lira district medicines and health supplies procurement and management team headed by the District Health Officer, it was disclosed that in the 1st and 2nd quarter of FY 2013/14, the district officially conducted 5,139 deliveries. However, over the same period of time the district recorded 6 maternal deaths and 184 neonatal deaths of which over 80% were stillbirths. Lack of lighting systems is some of the causes of neonatal and maternal deaths.