By Amadou M Jadama
A principal investigator of the early Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) study revealed Thursday that over one million pre-mature newborns die every year, globally.
Dr Helen Brotherton of the MRCs London School of Hygiene Tropical Medicine, was speaking at the Open Day event, designed to sensitise mothers on the importance of the KMC, held at the EFSTH grounds in Banjul.
KMC is an intervention aimed at improving outcomes among preterm and low birth weight newborns.
Organisers said it will serve as a platform to update and inform the community, government and other stakeholders on its importance.
And Ms Brotherton said: “The programme will help decrease the risk of death among newborn babies.
“In The Gambia, out of hundred babies, we know there are fourteen newborn preterm, and this hundred out of fourteen are more attractive to death. So this is a way to manage and decrease number of deaths.”
Ms Brotherton said the lack of appropriate and affordable resources is a major barrier in efforts to reducing preterm and neonatal mortality, saying alternative methods of managing newborns is “urgently needed.”
She said: “Kangaroo Mother Care in stable babies reduces mortality by approximately 40%, but the benefits of using it early in unstable babies are not known and this has been identified as a research priority.”