The CHO attributed the problem to distance and the mentality of the indigenes of the people of Kagbaneh and its surrounding villages, as some communities are 10 miles away from the facility, while others are five miles away.
She said because of these challenges, pregnant women most times prefer to go to Traditional Birth Attendances (TBAs), where herbs are administered to them before they decide to visit the health facility, especially when there are complications. Therefore, the centre keeps recording low turnouts.
It could be recalled that prior to the emergence of Ebola in Sierra Leone, the health sector was considered by many as one of the weakest in the sub-Sahara Africa, looking at the small and ill-equipped health facilities in the country.
Staff capacities were also low and inadequate.
But the aftermath of Ebola and the post-recovery period witnessed the launch and implementation of a number of health recovery initiatives, including the Presidential Recovery Priorities, among which improving the health sector and healthcare delivery was one of the main objectives.
Madam Regina Posseh, the Mammy Queen of Safroko Limba Chiefdom confirmed the low turnout of pregnant and lactating mothers at the health center and the challenges they continue to face in helping them change their mentality.
‘As community stakeholders, we have made frantic efforts to halt this negative mentality of pregnant women, without success’, she said.
She added that they have even involved a number of husbands from the surrounding villages to ensure that they encourage their wives to be accessing the health center, but also without success.
Mary Sesay, a suckling mother,
‘We go to the TBAs because of the distance from our villages to the health centre. Unlike the health centre which is fat off, the TBAs who administer local herbs to us, are in our midst.