PAKWACH. The women of Wanglei A cell, Puvungu East ward in Pakwach Town council have asked government to consider arresting traditional birth attendants, saying they are the reason fellow women shun antenatal services.
They argued that once action is taken against traditional birth attendants, cases of home delivery will reduce.
The women voiced their concern during an outreach dialogue meeting organized by international service volunteers’ association (ISVA) and Pakwach district health department mid this week. The meeting was aimed at finding factors hindering married couples from attending antenatal services.
It was established that women resort to giving birth at home due to the influence of traditional birth attendants. Ms Joyce Jamirwoth, a local resident asked government to come up with stringent measures against the act so as to bar both mothers and the traditional birth attendants from conducting risky deliveries at home.
She said the measures should include the option of arresting and charging such culprits before courts of law.
Jamirwoth noted that it is not good to deny an unborn baby the right to access good health services through antenatal clinics.
Ms Jerro Acombo, a mother of three instead said women in the area at times prefer delivering home because their husbands fear escorting them for antenatal services.
According to Acombo, men believe they will be subjected to numerous tests including HIV whenever they go for antenatal visits.
But Mr Michael Okumu, the chairperson Wanglei A cell noted that despite their effort to ban the activities of the local birth attendants, most women in the area still prefer going for their services.
Ms Cissy Canpara, the Pakwach district reproductive health officer said the practice of delivering through traditional birth attendants is still rampant not only in Puvungu but in the entire district.
She observed that many expectant mothers tend to seek for the services of traditional birth attendants and only rush to the health units when it is too late.