Introducing her team to the deputy minister and staff, Marj said it is with the utmost pride and honour that Korle-Bu Neuroscience Foundation announces their membership with the G4 Alliance, which is “dedicated to building political priority for surgical, obstetric, trauma and anesthesia care as part of the global development agenda”. She said they are thrilled to connect, and even more thrilled with their Medical Mission to Ghana, Nigeria, Liberia and Sierra Leone in May-June 2016.
She said they are in Sierra Leone to know what the country needs to support its fight against maternal maternity and morbidity, adding that they are all set to supply five 40ft containers of assorted medical equipments and supplies to the Connaught hospital, Bo Government hospital, Lumley Government hospital, the PCMH and the Aberdeen Women’s Centre in Freetown respectively.
She said after meeting with the minister, it is expected that the country will now itemize supplies they needed to be put in the containers and they will be packaged for and be sent to Sierra Leone as early as possible. She ended that the shipping and clearing of these containers once they are loaded, is the sole responsibility of the Government of Sierra Leone.
Welcoming the team, Deputy Health Minister, Madina Rahman thanked the team for coming and assured them of her ministry’s continued support to fulfill its part in the process.
She further assured that by work day today 10th June, she would have met with her boss and staff to itemize their needs and will afterwards report to the visiting team.
It can be recalled that few months ago, another team from the John Hopkins University completed a week-long assessment visit to Sierra Leone, aimed at establishing a partnership between the Princes Christian Maternity Hospital (PCMH) and the university.
The partnership, when formalized, will help strengthen the country's health system and build the human capacity in women's reproductive health.
Director of John Hopkins HIV Women's Health Program, Dr. Jean R. Anderson said their visit was facilitated by the hospital's Senior Medical Superintendent, Dr. Alimamy P. Koroma, adding that the idea of building an academic partnership to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality in Sierra Leone was discussed when she met Dr. Koroma in Accra this year.
According to her, Dr. Koroma presented a case on the deplorable affairs of Sierra Leone's maternal health and made a case for a partnership between John Hopkins University and PCMH.
As a result of the passionate appeal, she said, the university heeded the cry and decided to send a six-man team to assess where and how the partnership will work.
Professor Anderson explained that the partnership would be built on a comprehensive and sustainable programme to address the most pressing women's reproductive health problems, in partnership with the government, while at the same time developing the human capacity to address critical reproductive health needs.
She said they would develop a sustainable postgraduate residency training programme in OBGYN to rebuild a cadre of tertiary healthcare professionals in women's reproductive health.
"In addition, the partnership will improve education and training in women's health at the pre-service level for nurses and midwives, focusing on cost-effective and evidence-based interventions to reduce maternal and new born mortality and improve infection prevention in the post-Ebola era," she added.
Senior Medical Superintendent, Dr. Alimamy P. Koroma who has been the key player and facilitator of these goodies, expressed thanks and appreciation to the John Hopkins, Korle-Bu, Compassionate Resource Warehouse and partners for accepting his appeals to save the lives of women and newborn babies in Sierra Leone.
He said despite the introduction of free maternal healthcare by government, the level of service delivery for basic and comprehensive obstetric care remains inadequate due to the shrinking number of health providers.
"Sierra Leone's maternal morbidity and infant mortality rates are nothing to write home about. The partnership is coming at the right time as it will help solve the country's shortage of obstetricians and gynecologists," he enthused and disclosed that Sierra Leone has only five obstetricians and gynecologists, with three already retired and two in active service.