Increased infant mortality rate worrying Bunyoro medical officials

Medical officials in Bunyoro region have decried the increasing cases of babies who are being born prematurely.

The head of the pediatric department at Hoima regional Referral hospital Dr Tom Ediam said out of an average of 500 babies that are born at the hospital monthly, over 119 babies are admitted at the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit. The unit specializes in the care of ill or premature newborn infants.

He said 28 percent of the 119 babies that are admitted at the unit annually are premature.

He added that 26 percent out of the 119 babies are admitted suffering from brain injuries due to prolonged labour while 46 percent suffer from infections.

Medical officials at the hospital told a delegation of MPs and officials from Save the Children, an NGO that supports child welfare, who visited the hospital on Tuesday that the increasing numbers of premature babies is contributing to the increasing cases of infant mortality.

The visit was part of the awareness campaigns ahead of the world prematurity day.

The Buliisa district health officer Dr Samuel Onyait said maternal and infant mortality rates are high in the district majorly due to over 70 percent of the mothers who shun public health facilities and opt to deliver at their homes with the help of traditional birth attendants.