Maternal and Child Health
Although significant improvements in childhood mortality rates are recorded; 91 deaths per 1000 live births in 1990 to 43 in 2015, the mortality rates for children aged below five years are still high with 5.9 million deaths over 2015. Maternal deaths are recorded as 830 daily in developing countries. Child and maternal causes of morbidity and mortality continue to be among the top drivers of health loss in most countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. These causes of morbidity and mortality are often preventable. However, insufficient supply of high quality commodities, poor regulation of these commodities and the lack of access and awareness of how, why and when to use them, are the main barriers to the access and appropriate use of MCH commodities. EPN seeks to address these barriers in faith-based health systems to help decrease the disease burden associated with MCH.
As per the strategic plan, EPN addresses issues on maternal and child health through three main focal strategies, namely advocacy, capacity building and research and information sharing. EPN advocates for the prioritization of MCH medicines in faith based institutions and facilitates pooled procurement initiatives to increase availability of MCH commodities. EPN develops guidelines and builds the capacity of pharmacy staff on the proper use of pediatric formulations and other pharmaceutical commodities. Lastly EPN conducts baseline assessments on the availability and use of MCH commodities. EPN raises awareness among church leaders about the burden of MCH illnesses and increase access to family planning knowledge and methods at our members’ institutions.