Stakeholders in the health sector have reiterated the importance of Health Insurance Schemes as the way forward to boost access to effective, prompt, affordable, and quality healthcare services
They made the call at the 2022 Stakeholders’ Meeting of Maternal and Perinatal Death Surveillance and Response (MPDSR) held at the General Hospital Ikorodu on July 7th, 2022.
The MPDSR stakeholders meeting was attended by the Chairman of Lagos State Health Service Commission, Dr Atinuke Onayiga and other members which include, Dr Olumuyiwa Sholanke and Dr Mobolaji Olukoya.
Also in attendance was Dr Donald Imosemi, Chairman MPDSR Lagos State, Prince Olusesi Tajudeen (Baba Abiye) – Member, Lagos State Traditional Medicine Board; Dr M.B. Idowu – Member, Association of Nigerian Private Medical Practitioners (ANPMP) Lagos State; Mrs Joan Oluyemi, Service Charter Improvement Officer, Lagos State Ministry of Health; traditional rulers, traditional birth attendants (TBAs), religious organizations, market women and other stakeholders.
Dr Taiwo Hassan, Medical Director, General Hospital Ikorodu during his opening remarks warned Traditional Birth Attendants against admitting and treating pregnant women with hypertension, diabetes, sickle cell disease, and previous caesarean operation amongst others. He urged TBAs to know their limits and refer pregnant women to the hospital to reduce maternal and child mortality in the country. “TBAs are known to mismanage patients, collect their money and later push them out,” He said.
He also called on residents to embrace the ILERA EKO Health Insurance plan of Lagos State Health Management Agency (LASHMA) as a sustainable way of accessing healthcare and reducing costs. He cited an example of a patient who performed a caesarian section with less than N10,000 after enrolling for Ilera Eko.
Dr Donald Imosemi the Chairman, Lagos State MPDSR Technical Committee in his remark outlined the leading causes of maternal mortality as hypertension in pregnancy (high blood pressure), obstetric haemorrhage (bleeding), maternal sepsis (infection), and venous thromboembolism (clot).
He stated that efforts are being geared towards improving the ugly statistics of high perinatal and maternal mortality in Lagos state and Nigeria as a whole.
Prince Olusesi Tajudeen (Baba Abiye) in his remarks stated that there is need for a comprehensive data on maternal deaths, noting that maternal death linked to the activities of auxiliary nurses and quacks are usually collated with registered TBAs. He stated that the unregistered individuals are usually not their members and urged the government and stakeholders to develop means of generating more accurate data to identify possible gaps.
He also commended the cordial relationship between TBAs and the present management of General Hospital Ikorodu. They now have emergency numbers they can call when they need help; timely dispatch of an ambulance from GH Ikorodu for a quick referral instead of TBAs abandoning patients to their fate till the worst happens.
Dr Fatimo Rabiu, Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist made a presentation on minimizing maternal deaths and Dr Ridwan Maiyegun of the department of Paediatrics also made a presentation on taming the causes of perinatal morbidities and mortalities.
Other stakeholders also discussed extensively the benefits of the health insurance scheme as one of the best that has ever happened in the history of Lagos State.