New device gives mums hope during childbirth

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A LOW-TECH first-aid device designed to prevent excessive loss of blood after childbirth is a step forward in reducing high mortality rates in Papua New Guinea, an official says.
Bleeding in pregnancy that occurs before, during and after childbirth – medically called obstetric hemorrhage – is one of the leading causes of deaths from pregnancy and childbirth-related complications.
Non-pneumatic anti-shock garment (NASG) was introduced to PNG by the Department of Health (NDoH) in partnership with PNG Obstetrics and Gynaecology Society, United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) and the Australian government. It was launched by Minister of Health Sir Puka Temu on Tuesday.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the device is lightweight, made up of five segments that close tightly.
It applies pressure to the lower body and abdomen, thereby stabilising vital signs and resolving hypovolemic shock.
When fitted correctly, the reusable NASG forces blood to the essential organs – heart, lungs and brain.
Sir Puka said NASG was a highly cost-effective intervention for post-partum haemorrhage which would help a lot of women, especially in the rural areas, where getting to a hospital was difficult.
“The Government is focused on reducing high maternal and neonatal (newborns) mortality in the country,” he said.
“No woman should die to give life and every baby born should live
Sir Puka thanked development partners for their support and the University of PNG school of medicine and health science for continually providing training for doctors, nurses and health workers.
Unicef regional director Karin Hulshof said it was a small initiative but would make a big difference. He thanked the Australian government for the K11 million SLSS project and said Unicef was committed to supporting the PNG Government reduce wwmaternal mortality.

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