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Torchlight Series

Saving Mothers, Giving Life 2.0: A Collaborative Approach to Improving Maternal Care in Kaduna State.

In 2021, we discussed the first phase of the Saving Mothers Giving Life (SMGL) project which was implemented in Cross River State; and introduced SMGL 2.0, the second phase of the initiative being implemented by Pathfinder International with the aim of improving access to maternal and newborn health services and strengthening collaboration and partnership between […]

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Torchlight Series

Leveraging the Private Sector to Expand Access to Family Planning — Without Compromising Quality

By Iyadunni Olubode (Lead Writer) It has been a rough couple of years for maternal health. COVID-19 dealt a major blow to our health system, setting us back in our efforts to improve care quality and equity to help pregnant women survive and thrive.In order to sufficiently tackle our nation’s maternal health crisis, however, we […]

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Thought Leadership Series

Poor knowledge and practice around oxytocin could put women in Nigeria at risk during childbirth

By Chioma S. Ejekam, University of Lagos and Chimezie Anyakora, Pan Atlantic University Severe bleeding after childbirth — postpartum haemorrhage — is a leading cause of maternal morbidity and mortality in middle-income countries. Oxytocin is an affordable and effective drug that’s recommended to prevent postpartum haemorrhage. But there are concerns about the quality of oxytocin available for use by […]

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Torchlight Africa

Fistula Repairs Redeeming Hope for Malawian Women

By Josephine Chinele (Lead Writer) Jackline Chiwinga remembered the euphoria of waking up to dry bedding after her successful obstetric fistula repair surgery. Seventeen years old and married, for one year, she lived with stigma, gossip, and isolation due to the constant leaking of urine and the foul odour that followed her everywhere. However, everything […]

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Torchlight Series

The ‘AI-Powered Midwife’ Helping Pregnant Nigerian Women and Newborns Stay Healthy

By Innocent Eteng (Lead Writer) Five years ago, when pregnancy related complications threatened the life of Abisola Oladapo’s new-born baby, she experienced a ‘eureka’ moment. “Unknown to me, my water had broken but I didn’t tell my doctor during my appointment because I thought I’d wet myself and I didn’t want to be judged,” she […]

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Thought Leadership Series

Saving Mothers Lives: Improving the Procurement of Quality Maternal Medicines in Nigeria

By Dara Ajala-Damisa and Sunday Ehigiator (Lead Writers) Access to quality essential medicines is not only a human right, but also crucial to realising the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as set out by the United Nations. While the Nigerian government is putting in place programmes to improve the health of Nigerians and deliver priority health […]

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Torchlight Series

Rural Health Mission Nigeria: Providing Lifesaving Care to Mothers and Babies in Plateau State

It was a cold, serene morning in Garkuwa community of Wase Local Government Area (LGA), Plateau State and in a consulting room in Cottage Hospital, Sahura Kasimu sat with her two-month-old son, Mustapha nestled in her arms, as she spoke with Martina Dabot, the attending health officer. Kasimu gave birth to Mustapha in the same […]

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Thought Leadership Series

Maternal Mental Health: A Reflection on World Mental Health Day 2021

Ifeyinwa Yusuf and Kenni Ndili (Lead Writers) A woman’s body undergoes many changes through pregnancy, birth and postpartum that affect her in several ways. Until recently there was limited discussion around the psychological effects of pregnancy and childbirth on the mental health of women. According to the World Health Organisation, one in three to one […]

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Torchlight Series

Celebrating Womanhood: A #GivingBirthInNigeria Storytelling Event

Ibukun Oguntola & Thelma Chioma Abeku (Lead Writers) On a relaxing Friday evening at the beautiful Thought Pyramid Art Gallery in Abuja, the Celebrating Womanhood Art Gala brought together stakeholders from diverse backgrounds to expand knowledge and action about key gender and maternal health issues. This multidisciplinary group of people positioned uniquely within and outside […]

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Thought Leadership Series

Gender Inequality: A Mind Shift could Improve Maternal Care

Ifeyinwa Yusuf (Lead Writer) Growing up I dreamt of being a renowned obstetrician or surgeon like Ben Carson. After reading his book, Gifted Hands, I was pumped-up with zeal, so, using my monthly student allowance, I bought as many medical books as I could afford. I imagined what it would be like to live in […]

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Torchlight Series

Healthy Mother, Healthy Child: Encouraging ANC, PMTCT uptake in Akwa Ibom State

By Kelechukwu Iruoma (Lead Writer) Eme Okon was two months pregnant with her third child when she started attending antenatal care (ANC) at the Eyokponung Primary Health Centre (PHC) in Akwa Ibom State of southern Nigeria. This was her first time ever; having not attended ANC during her first and second pregnancies. During her first […]

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Torchlight Series

Human-centered Design for Life: How Smiles for Mothers is Keeping Mothers Alive

About one in every five global maternal deaths happens in Nigeria. Improving maternal health outcomes must remain a key priority that generates urgent policy action. According to the 2018 Nigeria Demographic Health Survey (NDHS), out of 100,000 live birth, 512 women will die while giving birth. In the same survey, findings suggest that the lifetime […]

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Torchlight Africa

Community Health Workers as the Backbone of Primary Healthcare Delivery: Rwanda’s Approach

Health care should be equitable. This means it must be accessible to anyone, regardless of social class, or place of residence. For a pregnant woman dwelling either in the hills of Rwanda, or in the deserts of Niger Republic, comprehensive antenatal care and support is very important. The work of providing critical care to women […]

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Thought Leadership Series

Quality of Maternal Medicines in Nigeria: What You Should Know

By Amaka Yusuf and Dara Ajala-Damisa (Lead writers) The World Health Organisation has reported that each year, between 5.7 and 8.4 million people die due to poor quality care in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) and this accounts for 15 percent of overall deaths. Majority of affected LMICs record lost productivity due to poor quality […]