Emory Nursing Maternal and Neonatal Health in Ethiopia Partnership

Guide Team Helps Save Lives of Mother and Newborn

alyEighteen-year-old Galane Tedese called for help as soon as she realized her labor was taking too long. Coming to her aid was her local Guide Team, consisting of a traditional birth attendant and a volunteer community health promoter who had received training in a basic package of home-based, life-saving interventions from the Maternal and Newborn Health in Ethiopia Partnership (MaNHEP). The team immediately recognized the danger of Tedese’s prolonged labor and moved her to the local health facility.

Later, when Tedese was referred to a hospital in Addis Ababa, the Guide Team helped Tedese’s family secure funds for medicine and transportation. As a result of the team’s effort, Tedese was able to deliver a healthy baby girl by Caesarean section.

 “The family feared death because of the surgery [Caesarean section],” said Tulu Kebebe, a Guide Team member. “But we were able convince them the need for immediate medical treatment.”

MaNHEP trains Guide Teams in rural Oromiya and Amhara, Ethiopia, to ensure pregnant women receive appropriate care, especially during labor and delivery when complications can result in maternal and newborn deaths. In addition to training, MaNHEP’s work focuses on ensuring systems are in place to support maternal and newborn health care. In Tedese’s community, a quality improvement team had established systems of pregnancy identification and labor notification. These systems alerted the local health extension worker when Tedese went into labor and ensured that Tedese received appropriate care and treatment.

Photo caption: Galane Tedese and her newborn daughter Adese.

Lessons from “Ragini’s Story” Spur Mother to Make Preparations for Labor and Delivery

bededeEmebet Bedede, a 19-year-old mother who lives in rural Oromiya, Ethiopia, knew the danger signs of prolonged labor from having read “Ragini’s Story: The Road to Death” in MaNHEP’s Community Maternal and Newborn Health Take Action Card Booklet. Knowing such a complication could result in death, Bedede immediately notified her local Guide Team who transported her to the local health post and later to the hospital.

“The Road to Death helped me to understand the danger signs of prolonged labor,” explained Bedede, who was diagnosed with a congested pelvis and received a Caesarean section. “Without this knowledge, I would have been one of those who died of pregnancy complications.”

Also ensuring a positive outcome for Bedede and her newborn were the preparations that she had made for labor and delivery. “Ragini’s Story” had taught her the importance of saving money for transportation to a health facility in the event of complications. Bedede’s foresight and her Guide Team’s swift actions were instrumental in saving her life and ensuring that she safely delivered a healthy boy.

Photo caption: Emebet Bedede and her newborn son Getu Moges.

More success stories can be found here.