Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Foundation receives equipment to curb premature births

A local NGO, Doris Mollel Foundation (DMF), last week received three oxygen concentrators to support its ongoing efforts to address premature births in the country. The equipment worth 10m/- was handed over by GSM Foundation. Receiving the equipment in Dar es Salaam, DMF founder Doris Mollel said the support came as part of commemoration of World Prematurity Day which will take place on November 17. According to her, the equipment will be distributed to referral hospitals in Shinyanga, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar to address premature births, the leading cause of death for newborns. Mollel said the national rate of preterm births has gone up and reports show that approximately 9,000 newborn babies out of 200,000 die of complications related to preterm births in the country every year. “Despite low birth rates in the past decade, preterm birth rates is on the rise worldwide. I urge both public and private actors to join hands to protect lives of innocent babies who are at high risk,” she appealed. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), preterm birth is the leading cause of newborn deaths and the second-leading cause of mortality in children under the age of five. However, modern neonatal intensive care has made it possible for even the tiniest of babies to survive their prematurity.  Handing over the equipment, GSM Foundation representative Shannon  Kiwamba said the contribution will help to tackle the challenge in hospitals. Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner Paul Makonda commended GSM Foundation for its support. He urged other people to feel the same and come out to help address such countrywide challenges. Worldwide reports show that approximately 15 million babies are born preterm each year, accounting for about one in ten of all babies born worldwide.

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