For Community Hospital, Ilisan-Remo, lack of water is HISTORY!
Today as always, we did our part in nation building…
In our determination to fight maternal mortality as well as upgrade hospitals to make them more attractive to use and enable them serve as capable referral points, we have commenced the drilling of a water bore hole at the Community Hospital Ilishan-Remo.
This hospital serves thousands of people from about 14 surrounding villages. A look at the hospital from afar will show a fairly good structure but as it has become common with most community we visit, the inside tells another tale. The hospital was clearly not being fully utilized by members of the community and the reasons were simple. Structures don’t make service, facilities or amenities.
The hospital has no electricity and water supply. Patients are required to fetch water to the hospital in advance when seeking medical treatment and if the patient is ‘unfortunate’ enough to require medical attention at night, then there is the additional burden of purchasing petrol for the hospital’s small generator. It was therefore not surprising that the hospital took just five deliveries in January despite having registered over 100 women for antennal and having more than 30 babies brought in for immunization. Where the babies were born is not in doubt. Traditional Birth Attendants thrive in this area.
Ilishan Community hospital has competing with it, more than ten traditional birth attendants with almost no skill or unsharpened skill. The competition is intense with the hospital at a disadvantaged position. Patients at the traditional birth homes do not need to bother about fetching water, buying petrol or looking for transportation for referral (at least until the patients are almost dead). All they have to do is drink herbs and recite incantations. With them, the solution for protracted labor or delayed delivery is simply ‘more herbs and more incantations’. If all fails and the woman die, destiny is called upon, a step mother or neighbor somewhere is blamed for the death and the family resigns to fate.
At the point of our intervention, efforts were already being taken by the health workers who had contributed money from their irregular salary to connect the hospital to electricity supply. What was left was the water project which the community had battled with for more than seven years. Brown Button Foundation commenced the drilling of this bore hole to the delight of the entire community and three days from now the bore hole will be completed! Just this step alone has increased the number of women registering for antenatal at the hospital. Gradually, faith in the system is being restored and we are more determined than ever to connect more women with skilled care.
Watching the beautiful smiles on the faces of those we have saved and joy in the eyes of communities we have touched, our collective resolve only strengthens. We won’t stop till we see the change we seek!
Much love to everyone and thank you for your support!