Bayelsa State Boosts Riverine Healthcare with Six New UNICEF-Donated Ambulance Boats


BAYELSA, Nigeria, 17 April 2024 – UNICEF has handed over six ambulance boats to the Bayelsa State Authorities to enhance healthcare and emergency response providers in riverine communities residing in remote areas. 

The ambulance boats, funded by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, are outfitted with medical facilities, and staffed with healthcare personnel educated to offer swift and efficient emergency medical help, transport sufferers together with pregnant girls in labour and newborns to medical amenities and facilitate immunization outreach programmes.

With almost 100 out of each 1000 kids not surviving to see their fifth birthday, toddler mortality at 70 per 1000 births, 32 per cent of pregnant girls not receiving antenatal care and solely about 40 per cent infants delivered in well being amenities in Bayelsa State, the ambulance boats are well timed to enhance survival charges for girls and youngsters.

“The availability of those ambulance boats represents a vital step in the direction of making certain that even essentially the most distant communities have entry to lifesaving healthcare providers, stated Ms. Cristian Munduate, UNICEF Nigeria Nation Consultant.  “These boats is not going to solely function a method of transportation for sufferers but additionally operate as platforms for delivering important healthcare interventions, similar to immunizations, antenatal care, and well being training, on to these in want”.

“This improvement is proof of the facility of partnership and we’re happy to be working with the Bayelsa State Authorities and Federal Authorities, and UNICEF to enhance immunization and Major Well being Take care of communities in exhausting to achieve settings. At Gavi, we’re consistently in search of new methods to help governments to additional attain the unimmunized and with this sub-national funding being the primary of its sort initiative,” stated Jessica Crawford, the Gavi Senior Nation Supervisor for Nigeria.

“We’re deeply grateful for the donation of those six ambulance boats, which deliver hope to our riverine communities. This initiative is a crucial step in our ongoing efforts to safeguard the lives of our moms, kids, and weak populations throughout Bayelsa. These boats is not going to solely guarantee well timed medical interventions but additionally fortify our resolve to offer equitable healthcare providers, regardless of geographical limitations. Collectively, we’re navigating in the direction of a brighter, more healthy future for each citizen of Bayelsa State.” Stated His Excellency Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, Deputy Governor, Bayelsa State.

This initiative builds on the priorities of the Federal Ministry of Well being as expressed within the Nigeria Well being Renewal Funding Initiative, to make the well being system extra equitable and environment friendly, cut back the variety of kids who haven’t obtained any vaccine, and enhance immunization protection. 

The supply of the ambulance boats makes up a part of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in 2022 between the Bayelsa State Authorities, the Federal Ministry of Well being, the Nigeria Governors Discussion board, GAVI, and UNICEF to enhance routine immunization and first healthcare methods and cut back lack of life, significantly amongst girls and youngsters.

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The MoU has considerably strengthened major healthcare service supply in Bayelsa State by growing the demand for healthcare providers and bolstering its healthcare workforce by the recruitment of 527 expert well being employees, comprising nurses, midwives, and group well being extension employees, addressing the power problem of human assets for well being.

The renovation of six major healthcare centres, together with enhancements in well being and WASH facilities, has enhanced entry to healthcare providers, significantly in distant and underserved communities. By means of built-in outreaches and supportive supervisory visits, the state has reached 1000’s of kids with important major healthcare providers, together with immunization, diet, and start registration.

Images from the handover ceremony can be found right here and  right here.

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