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Jun 8, 2018

Oxfam’s training programs saving lives

Naureen Khan and Health Campaign Team, Oxfam India

Deaths due to hypertensive disorders in pregnancy are one of the major cause of maternal deaths in India at about 14%. To reduce it, regular monitoring of blood pressure is very important during the Antenatal Care (ANC) check-ups. 

Oxfam India conducted training programs in Chhattisgarh for all the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) workers according to the Dakshata guidelines as per government. One of the topics covered during the training was hypertensive disorders. The workers found Oxfam’s training very useful in understanding the various complications related to pregnancy. 

One of Oxfam’s training program MCH workers Lalmani met Sushila, a 42-year-old pregnant woman with high BP in a village in Chhattisgarh. The village comes under Semaria cluster where Jan Swasthya Sahyog (JSS) sub-centre is about 8 km away. Government hospital is about 35 km away from her village. Sushila, a mother of four daughters is pregnant now for the 5th time. Her in-laws including her husband insisted her to have one more baby as they wanted a boy.

Sushila regularly had headaches due to high BP. Lalmani identified this immediately as the sign of severe pre-eclampsia and referred her to sub-centre for further management. Pre-eclampsia is a pregnancy complication due to high blood pressure and signs of damage to other organ systems. At the sub-centre, senior health worker conducted the check-up including the BP measurement. To prevent the eclampsia, he started the diagnosis and also referred Sushila to Ganiyari hospital for further management. In case of severe pre-eclampsia, termination of pregnancy becomes important and the decision has to be taken by the gynaecologist. After coming to the referral centre at Ganiyari, gynaecologist assessed her condition and decided to conduct the C-section and a healthy baby boy was delivered.

Sushila with her healthy child in her lap is an example of constant and sustained engagement by Oxfam’s project team. Oxfam facilitates regular capacity building training through partner organizations to these project team members to help the community live a better life. Oxfam helps the project team members learn about various skills and spread awareness about healthcare. The learning of such processes is then weaved into advocacy processes to make the change sustainable.   

When generous people like you donate to Oxfam India, we are able to spread awareness among people- especially the marginalized communities about their rights and empower them to raise their voice for their basic necessities. People like you help us enable our work on the ground and together we can spread awareness and urge the government on effective implementation of government health schemes, availability of services in PHCs and allocation of higher public health expenditure.

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