Tuesday

Birthing Clinic in Ubud

I am a registered nurse and midwife working at Byron District Hospital, Australia. I am passionate regarding access to equitable, safe, effective health care in developing countries. As such, I would like to request that you give consideration to providing support to Yayasan Bumi Sehat, a non-government, not for profit Foundation located in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia. This NGO has established a desperately needed maternal & infant health clinic that provides pregnancy, birthing and postnatal care to an increasing cohort of women who cannot afford to pay for maternity services. In addition to maternity services the clinic also provides ad hoc health services when available as visiting health care practitioners volunteer their services and time.

Recent Indonesian research studies have indicated that the maternal mortality rate in Indonesia is 373 per 100,000 live births (Jakarta Post 29/5/04) and that at least 50% of all Indonesians are anemic (Jakarta Post 7/7/04, p.1). The maternal mortality rate in Bali is almost double this at 718 per 100,00 live births and almost half these deaths are from post partum hemorrhage attributable mainly to malnutrition and concomitant anemia.

As you may be aware the people of the Indonesian island of Bali do not enjoy the advantages of a publicly funded health system and in the current economic climate post the Bali bombing there has been an increase in unemployment and an inability to pay for health care. Current maternity services are on a 'user pays' basis either with a private midwife or at a hospital. If a pregnant woman is more than 8 days overdue to give birth she is automatically scheduled for a Caesarian Section, which incurs additional costs. If the family cannot afford to pay the hospital bills the baby is not allowed to be discharged from the hospital. I recently visited the clinic and found the financial resources stretched, as Yayasan Bumi Sehat does not have any regular financial support from any overseas aid organisation's.

The Foundation is desperately in need of prenatal vitamin supplements for the women who attend the clinic to prevent/correct anemia. The Foundation also needs a consistent supply of oxytocin, a medication used immediately post birth to prevent post partum hemorrhage. Both these medications are automatically available to any woman giving birth in Australia and I believe that a consistent supply of these medications to the Foundation would assist in reducing the high maternal mortality and morbidity rates in Bali.

Contact: Elizabeth McCall Email: eamccall@bigpond.net.au

1 Comments:

Anonymous said...

I think it's not Bumi Sahat.. but it Bumi Sehat.. I see it at http://www.bumisehatbali.org/