WINSENGA UPDATE/BULLETIN 35.0 –Rotary, Aga Khan University announce their first graduating class in scholarship program in East Africa

Excerpts from Africa Science News

With more than 50 percent of women in the developing world delivering babies without the assistance of skilled health personnel, Rotary, a global humanitarian service organization; and Aga Khan University (AKU), a private non-denominational university; are together increasing access to trained health professionals for mothers and infants in East Africa.

The first class of 24 Rotary-sponsored scholars will graduate this month from AKU’s campuses in East Africa, in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda with Bachelor of Science degrees in Nursing, or Diplomas in General Nursing.
“In rural Kenya, having a nurse or midwife present during childbirth can mean the difference between life and death,” said Geeta Manek Rotary member from Nairobi. “This class of highly trained nurses will help ensure that mothers and their infants receive the best health care possible.”



WINSENGA UPDATE/BULLETIN 33.0 – PPH Medication Could Cut Maternal Deaths

Excerpts from

IN a country where deaths from pregnancy and childbirth have reducing insignificantly, the recent report of the introduction of a new medication for prevention and treatment of postpartum haemorrhage (PPH) is seen as a moment of hope.

Health analysts touted it as a fresh move that targets reducing the number of maternal deaths currently standing at 13,000 per year. Despite progress in reducing under-five child mortality, Tanzania is ranked among the countries with the highest child and maternal mortality in the world, a new report for the ‘best place to be a mother’ shows.

According to the State of the World’s Mothers, by Save the Children, an Independent Children’s charity working in over 40 countries across the world, the situation of mothers and newborn babies dying from preventable diseases in the country is still terrifying.

According to the report, Tanzania is one of the 12 countries, which accounts for 77 per cent of the global health workforce shortage. Tanzania’s rapidly growing population, which is currently estimated at 2.9 per cent per annum, is cited by the report as one of the challenges facing the country, while its overall health workforce is shrinking fast.


WINSENGA UPDATE/BULLETIN 32.0 – Male involvement during pregnancy and childbirth

Development of appropriate interventions to increase male involvement in pregnancy and childbirth is vital to strategies for improving health outcomes of women with obstetric complications. The objective was to gain a deeper understanding of their experiences of male involvement in their partners’healthcare during pregnancy and childbirth.

The findings might inform interventions for increasing men’s involvement in reproductive health issues.

Methods: We conducted 16 in-depth interviews with men who came to the hospital to attend to their spouses/partners admitted to Mulago National Referral Hospital. All the spouses/partners had developed severe obstetric complications and were admitted in the high dependency unit.

We sought to obtain detailed descriptions of men’s experiences, their perception of an ideal “father”and the challenges in achieving this ideal status. We also assessed perceived strategies for increasing male participation in their partners’healthcare during pregnancy and childbirth.

Data was analyzed by content analysis.

Results: The identified themes were: Men have different descriptions of their relationships; responsibility was an obligation; ideal fathers provide support to mothers during childbirth; the health system limits male involvement in childbirth; men have no clear roles during childbirth, and exclusion and alienation in the hospital environment. The men described qualities of the ideal father as one who was available, easily reached, accessible and considerate.

Most men were willing to learn about their expected roles during childbirth and were eager to support their partners/wives/spouses during this time. However, they identified personal, relationship, family and community factors as barriers to their involvement.