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City of Banjul
Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Activists to match against ‘massive’ maternal mortality

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The activist group, Gambia Women’s Lives Matter, has disclosed that between September last year to July 2021, more than 100 mothers and 29 children died at Gambian health facilities during delivery.

The group said because of the daily rise of this gruesome statistics, they will embark on a peaceful march on September 25 to draw attention to this menace.

”In fact, as recent as Monday, a woman died in Brufut and in Brikama while delivering.

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In the case of Brikama, it is reported that the victim died on the operation table because of power failure,” said Ebrima Drammeh, a member of the group.

He said most of the maternal deaths were due to lack of blood, poor handling of premature delivery and even negligence.

“We have now secured a permit from the police to stage a peaceful march to high light this menace on Saturday September 25,” he said.

Meanwhile, the country’s main referral Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital has issued a statement on the same topic. It reads: “The hospital management is aware of the recent cases pf maternal mortality circulating on social media that had part of their treatment at our hospital, EFSTH. We would like to extend our sincere condolences to the families involved.

While we cannot comment on individual cases, we would like to reassure the general public that all mortality cases are reviewed routinely to identify any personal or system errors to learn from and avoid future occurrences as well as to ensure that standard procedures had been followed. Review of all recent mortalities have not revealed any deviation from accepted standard procedures, however we endeavour, as with all cases to learn from these.

The Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital Obstetrics and Gynaecology department is the premier department of the country and receives all complicated cases from every health facility in The Gambia (public and private) and as such, mortalities at our facility will be skewed.

We are cognisant that there is always room for improvement but we endeavour to continue to provide as good a standard of care as possible with the resources at our disposal.

We thank you for your continuous support and understanding and we take constructive criticism of our service delivery positively as this will help improve the care we provide to the Gambian people.”

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