Poorest Maternal and Child Health service delivery in Upper Humla: Baseline Survey          

Kathmandu, 1 December 2017- SWAN Nepal completed the baseline survey for Maternal and Child Health Project in Humla district in November 2017. The main objective of this survey was to know the current Maternal and Child Health service delivery capacity in Humla, to identify governmental and non-governmental Maternal and Child Health resources and to identify gaps in care delivery which can be improved through subsequent interventions.

In this connection, SWAN took an approval from the Ministry of Health for the baseline survey in Humla. The survey team consisted of global experts from Nepal and the University of Utah. 6 experts, namely Bernhard Fassl, David Levy, Amber Chambers, Kirk Bjella, Kajsa Vlasic, Mary Caitlin Indart from the University of Utah and Ang Jangbu Sherpa, Ramu G.C and Lakpa Lama from the Nepal team involved in the Survey in November.

Tools used in the survey were health facility assessments, household survey, mortality estimation, focus group discussion and stakeholder interviews. The survey team was divided into 2 groups where Dr. Bernahard Fassl and team visited 8 health facilities in the Upper Humla and another team led by Ramu GC visited 4 health facilities in Lower Humla.

The main findings of the survey show Upper Humla has health facilities that are inadequately staffed, staffed with individuals lacking appropriate training and inadequate supplies for perinatal care (antenatal, intrapartum, and postpartum) which results women routinely deliver at home and places them at an increased risk of poor maternal and newborn outcomes. In comparison to Upper Humla, the majority of the health posts in lower Humla is adequately staffed and equipped to handle basic maternity and neonatal care as it is close to the district headquarter, Simikot. Hence, SWAN is planning to raise the fund through the potential donors to launch the two years Maternal and Child Health Project in Upper Humla.