The National, Monday 06th August, 2012
IT was a happy ending for baby Isaac and mum Marida Kaduwesaki (pictured) thanks to Milne Bay’s new sea ambulance MV Hinau Natuna and the province’s health authority. After a prolonged labour and pain at the Losuia Health Centre and without medical attention, Kaduweski was facing a grimmer experience.Options such as a 90-minute flight to the Alotau General Hospital were out of the question as the next flight was three days away. So too was the 32-hour small ferry service or the common 24-foot dingy with an outboard as rough seas made it too risky for small craft.However, the Hinau Natuna, meaning “my mother’s child” in the Tawala dialect of Milne Bay, and launched only a few hours earlier, was ready to test herself.
As if she was Kaduwesaki’s angel, she brushed all aside and made the 15-hour trip to the small, remote village of Losuia, in the Trobriand Islands. The ambulance picked up and delivered her safely more than 570km away to Alotau hospital.As a result, Kaduweski was able to deliver baby Isaac safely too.
At least 1,500 women die in childbirth every year in this country and thanks to the AusAID-funded ambulance, Kaduweski and Isaac did not become part of the statistics.
She was kept safe on board while travelling by an obstetrician and a doctor.