OB/Gynae course to resume

KATHMANDU: In order to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) on maternal mortality through the production of well-rounded professionals with broad range of skills to provide service to the mothers and would-be mothers, the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) is re-launching a one-year diploma course in gynaecology after a decade.

Dr Laxmi Raj Pathak, spokesperson at the ministry, said the course is going to be launched this year. He said the country has the urgent need for qualified birth attendants in every district.

The course is of one year duration where the medical cohorts are taught the skills in handling complex cases, including those involving caesarean.

MoHP has set the target of raising 40 per cent institutionalised delivery from the current 16 per cent, to achieve MDG by 2017.

Year 2017 is the cut-off date for achieving the target of reducing maternal mortality rate by 134 per 100,000 live births and Neonatal Mortality Rates by 15 per 1,000 live births.

The country has also set the target of increasing the involvement of Skilled Birth Attendant (SBA) by 60 per cent by that year. Similarly, the government aims to achieve 44 per cent of Antenatal Care (ANC) by SBA and to raise the number of women to 29.4 per cent of 4th ANC visit by the end of 2017.

The number of births at health institute currently stands at 194,246 (2008/09 data), up from 155,750 in the previous year.

Talking to The Himalayan Times, Pathak said the course on gynaecology was felt necessary after they found reluctance on the part of most medical doctors to become involved in the districts as gynaecologists.

"National Academy of Medical Sciences has agreed with the ministry to start the course from this year," said the spokesperson.

According to an MoHP estimation, pregnancy-related complications kill over 4,500 women every year in Nepal.

It further showed that one in every 200 pregnant women in Nepal die while giving birth. Most of them die of severe bleeding that can be treated even in basic health centres. Maternal mortality has fallen by about 50 per cent from the mid-nineties--from 539 to 281 cases per 100,000 births, according to MOHP.