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Quality maternal and child healthcare to reach remote Uzbek communities

TASHKENT, Uzbekistan – 12 May 2009. In a sweeping set of nationwide healthcare reforms, Uzbek maternal and child health workers in 9 regions are receiving training in international standards to save more mothers and babies lives.

The joint Ministry of Health, European Commission and UNICEF project will see nearly 12,000 health workers trained in new techniques by the end of 2010. The emphasis is on ensuring child survival, safe motherhood and improving essential newborn care.
The project kicked off in July 2008, yet the huge training programme is now rolling out to the regions.

In the Eastern region of Andijian staff are being trained in newborn resuscitation, essential newborn care, the promotion of exclusive breastfeeding and effective growth development monitoring to better keep track of babies health and development.

In the Central Samarkand region, training is underway in the integrated management of child illnesses for both doctors and nurses and the full introduction of the international live birth definition (ILBD). The ILBD provides better data on infant mortality to better address issues in care at the policy level. It is being rolled out nationwide in 2009.

Programmes are also underway in Tashkent city, Samarkand region, Namangan, Syrdarya, Khaskhadarya, Surkandarya, Navoi and Djizzak, thats 9 of Uzbekistan 14 regions.

Seveenteen training centre’s across the country are also being built up from scratch and the new techniques are being included into university medical curricula so future doctors and nurses keep up the good work.

According to UNICEF’s State of the World’s Children 2009, every day around 1,500 women die from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth globally. Since 1990, the estimated annual number of maternal deaths worldwide has exceeded 500,000. That’s nearly 10 million maternal deaths during the past 19 years.

In Uzbekistan, 99% of births are attended by a health professional and 97% take place in health facilities. There are almost as many maternal and child health workers as in Western Europe. Yet mortality rates are far higher, so it’s all about training professionals to give better care.

For more info, please contact:

Matthew Taylor -
Tel    +998-71-233.9512
Cell   +998-93-399.0558  






UNICEF correspondent Guy Degen reports on efforts to improve maternal health in Uzbekistan.
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