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Foundation Partners with LASUTH to Celebrate World Preterm Day

Abiye Maternal and Child Health International Foundation with Tunnizze Creations in collaboration with Lagos State University Teaching Hospital and the Lagos State Ministry of Health celebrated World Prematurity Day, themed ‘Together for Babies Born Too Soon; Caring for The Future’.

At a webinar to mark the day, several topics on caring for pre-term babies were discussed by experts in the field. First on the lists of speakers was Dr. Hala Daggash, Executive Director of Healthcare Leadership Academy who highlighted various steps to be taken towards quality healthcare improvement initiatives in neo-natal care. She emphasized that with full scale-up interventions, fewer deaths and fewer infections occur in preterms. She further encouraged institutions to partner and make collaborations through innovative approaches. Some of her suggestions include removal of financial barriers to institutional childbirth; strengthening and building critical skills amongst healthcare providers; forging stronger connections between healthcare providers and their communities to increase awareness of preterm birth issues and accessing appropriate care during pregnancy and labor.

Dr. Zainab Imam, Head of Neo-Natal Unit at the Institute of Maternal and Childcare Centre also known as Ayinke House in LASUTH, made a presentation on ‘Preterm Nutrition, Early Initiation of Breastmilk’. She spoke on the appropriate food quantity to be given to preterms and advocated for breastfeeding. She noted that, due to the complexities of having preterms babies, mothers may not find it easy lactating but should be encouraged to express breastmilk, before considering breastmilk fortifier. She also advocated for donor human milk, which is yet to be popular in Nigeria.

On his part, Dr. Peter Odion Ubuane, also of the Neonatal Unit of the Pediatrics Department at LASUTH, spoke on ‘Respiratory Support in Preterm Care in Nigeria’. He highlighted some constraints experienced in the medical terrain in Nigeria and also offered solutions on how medical personnel can to overcome them and save the lives of preterm babies.

Other activities at the webinar included physical demonstration of expressing breastmilk by Mrs. Mercy Olowe and a demonstration on lavage feeding via orogastric tube insertion for feeding in preterms by Mrs. Eromosele.

World Preterm Day is celebrated on the 11th of November every year.

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