Hinterland residents to benefit from maternal, child health project

Guyana has received assistance from the Canadian Government to improve maternal, newborn, and child health across hinterland regions.

The project is being funded by Global Affairs Canada and executed by McMaster University at a cost of CA$2.5 million. It will be implemented over five years.

The project aims to reduce mortality rates among women of childbearing age, newborns, and children under five years old in Regions One, Seven, Eight, and Nine.

Importantly, the approach intends to bridge the gap that exists between the coast and the hinterland, which shows a higher rate of mortality among the targeted population.

Training will be an essential part of the new venture to promote an equitable standard of health care and engage communities and traditional birth attendants to promote institutional health care for pregnancy.

A section of the gathering at the launch of the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Project

Moreover, the undertaking caters to family health planning and training to help reduce adolescent pregnancy in the hinterland communities.

During the launch at the Cara Lodge Hotel on Tuesday, Minister of Health, Dr Frank Anthony said there was no neonatal service for more than a decade in Guyana.

Since then significant strides were made to remedy the situation and the new project will build on that foundation.

“I know there is a desire to extend all of this into the different regions. We have started but we need that little impetus to make sure that all the regional hospitals will eventually have neonatal services and that is what this project will help us to do in many ways,” Dr Anthony explained.

Health Minister, Dr Frank Anthony addresses the gathering at the launch of the Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Project

He pointed out that Guyana and Canada share a great relationship and have worked on several projects together.

Meanwhile, the Canadian High Commissioner to Guyana, Mark Berman noted that the initiative demonstrates Canada’s commitment to empowering women and girls and reflects the government’s feminist international assistance policy.

Canadian High Commissioner to Guyana, Mark Berman

“The launch of this project comes at a strategic time in which we are seeing affirmations in the importance of gender equality, and the empowerment of women and girls to the achievement of sustainable development goals. That’s an important point that should not be lost,” he said.