Sierra Leone has registered good progress in some key areas of reproductive, maternal and child health. This was according to the Special Representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Nadia Rasheed.
She was speaking at the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Summit held in Freetown between 13th – 15th December, 2022, with the theme: ‘Maternal Mortality as a Public Health Emergency: Setting the Agenda for Universal Health Coverage for SRHR’
Lifesaving vaccines are reaching children and pregnant women across Sierra Leone, to prevent and tackle some of the leading infectious diseases.
Few years ago, Sierra Leone had one of the worst maternal and infant death rates in the world, so the government announced “that all health user fees would be removed for pregnant and lactating women and children under the age of five” and “introduced the Free Health Care Initiative which has given around 460,000 women and a million children a much better chance of having a longer and happier life.
But the Free Health Care Initiative has not happened without challenges, the greatest of which are the aspects of sustainability of this plausible scheme and also the enhancement of the quality of services offered in the health facilities.