MAP Launches Traditional Birth Attendants' Course in Kenya

( [email protected] ) Mar 18, 2004 02:19 PM EST

KENYA -- Christian based MAP International (Medical Assistance Programs) recently conducted a three-week Traditional Birth Attendants’ (TBA) course for over 30 participants with the Dorcas School of the Redeemed Gospel Church in Nairobi, Kenya as part the Health Promoter Training program which was developed last year by MAP.

In Kenya, along with many other regions in Africa, childbirth happens at home with the help of midwives, known as traditional birth attendants, who are considered high status in African societies. Through the training offered by MAP, the birth attendants learn how to carry out clean and safe deliveries including proper gloving and the sterilization process.

“MAP International has become a major partner in health in the slum areas, and we are truly grateful,” says Elizabeth Ngige, a community nurse working with the Redeemed Gospel Church Clinic.

The Health Promoter Training curriculum includes information about mother and child care, family planning, diagnosis and treatment of common illnesses and diseases, indicators of under-nutrition and malnutrition, STD diagnosis and treatment, HIV/AIDS education and prevention, and general hygiene. More than 100 health promoters have been trained by MAP.

“This training will contribute greatly to the reduction of maternal and infant morbidity and mortality rates in the community,” says Dr. Peter Okaalet, MAP’s Africa Director, a medical doctor with theological training.

The course provided an opportunity for traditional birth attendants like Margaret Malucho, Salome Aluoch, and Fiath Njoki, who have been delivering babies for more than 20 years, to receive proper medial training for healthy childbirth. Especially Njoki, a member of the Anglican Church, has been providing support to people with HIV/AIDS through her ministry.