In a recent opinion piece from the Observer, which was subsequently syndicated on AllAfrica.com, FHS Uganda Communications Specialist, Kakaire Ayub Kiruna, argued that:
If you are the kind of person who never misses television news, chances are that you watched the story of a pregnant woman who was reportedly abandoned by medics at Mukono Health Centre IV, not so long ago. But in case you missed the story, Ms Patricia Nantume, said to have been experiencing obstructed labour, could not raise the Shs 250,000 wanted by the medical officer on duty before conducting vital emergency surgery. [...]
While Nantume and her baby were lucky not to have become part of Uganda's high maternal and neonatal mortality statistics after sympathisers had her rushed to Kawolo hospital using an ambulance which was bought by area MP, Betty Nambooze, many don't find themselves this fortunate. [...]
Initiatives like Mukono's, where sympathisers spontaneously pooled financial resources to save a mother in danger remain unstudied, yet they could contribute to the body of evidence needed for policy influence and diffusion purposes.
He continues by outlining a new action research initiative spearheaded by the FHS Uganda team called the MANIFEST project, which is working to understand how community resources can be utilised to help reduce maternal and newborn mortality.
The article was featured as part of an ongoing series with AllAfrica.com in partnership with the Institute of Devleopment Studies. The initiative aims to produce and distribute compelling multi-media content on critical issues for Africa’s future as part of a development reporting initiative.