Six Uganda hospitals get Kangaroo care wraps
Prematurity is one of the major contributors of neonatal mortality in Uganda where the annual preterm birth rate stands at 14% with 226,000 babies born prematurely (below 37 weeks of pregnancy) each year. However, these preterms can be saved using Kangaroo Care (KC) which is a low-cost intervention that involves among other things continuous skin-to-skin contact between the mother/attendant and baby.
Evidence points to the effectiveness of KC in many Low and Middle-Income countries. For instance, a systematic review reported that kangaroo care lowered the risk of death among newborns by 40% at discharge. To be able to practice proper kangaroo care, one requires a proper KC wrap used to keep the baby in a proper position while on the mother/attendant’s chest. However, most facilities do not have these wraps and merely improvise using ordinary pieces of material.
Seeing this as one of the major challenges in practicing KC, the Makerere University Centre of Excellence for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health with funding from an Entrepreneur Ms Lydia Basemera has donated KC wraps to all the six hospitals in Busoga region.
According to the Centre Coordinator Dr Monica Okuga, “These wraps will go a long way in ensuring the comfort of mothers as they keep their babies in KC position. They are mainly for demonstration purposes. This means that the mothers cannot carry them away but can use the same design to get their own wraps.”