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Jun 25, 2008

No maternal deaths recorded as yet for 2008

Story PictureIn ceremonies this afternoon the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital was certified as the first Baby Friendly Hospital in the country. This means that the institution encourages new mothers to breastfeed and seeks to improve the care of pregnant women, mothers, and newborns. Maternal and Child Health Technical Advisor Dr. Natalia Largaespada Beer told News Five that the certification and the fact that no maternal deaths have been reported since the beginning of the year is a great achievement.

Dr. Natalia Largaespada Beer, Tech. Advisor, Maternal and Child Health, MOH
“If we look at the indicators measuring the Millennium Development Goals, they call for reducing the maternity mortality ratio from nineteen-ninety by two thirds. Belize definitely achieved that goal, we definitely had to have a ratio of forty-three for every hundred thousand live births—forty-three maternal deaths per hundred thousand live births and we have zero so if we continue with the interventions that we are doing at primary and secondary care and along with the community and non-governmental organisations and also with non-traditional partners, we definitely can maintain and sustain this achievement. It’s one of the most difficult indicators to be met by countries, even developed countries but it’s a challenge for us and we have a lot of groundwork that we have been strengthening. So definitely, if continue on the same pace, strengthening what we know works well, we can continue having this success. Zero maternal deaths don’t mean okay we are there and that’s it; it just means that if you can achieve it now, if you do what you have been doing everyday and try to maintain the bets quality of care, we can maintain the zero as much as possible with the collaboration of the community and the women themselves.”

The Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative was established in 1991 by UNICEF and WHO/PAHO.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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