The Bayelsa Government on Monday pledged to reduce the cases of

Prof. Ebitimitula Etebu, the state Commissioner for Health, said this at a news conference in Yenagoa as part of activities marking this year’s Maternal, Newborn and Child Healthcare Week (MNCHW).

Etebu said that the programme is focused on strengthening routine service delivery at the health facilities in all the local government areas of the state.

He said the weeklong programme, organised to deliver integrated, high impact, low cost, result oriented, effective, preventive and curative health care services, would round end on Friday.

The commissioner, however, noted that the impact was geared towards shoring up maternal and child indices in the areas of intervention embarked upon.

“The interventions to embark upon during the week include, vitamin A supplementation in children, de-worming of children, nutritional assessment of children.

“Others are iron/folate supplementation for pregnant women, routine immunisation for children, women of child bearing age and pregnant women, intermittent treatment of malarial in pregnant woman, HIV counselling and testing, among others,” he said.

He explained that quality healthcare delivery was imperative to mankind, saying that the programme would go a long way to reduce child mortality and improve maternal health of the people.

“The 2013 Nigeria Demographic and health survey (NDHS) indicate high neonatal, under-five and maternal mortality.

“The maternal mortality rate (MMR 1870/100, 000) in Bayelsa state is one of the poorest in the south-south zone and by extension, the country as a whole,” Etebu said.

The commissioner restated government readiness to reach out to the riverine communities in the state during the period of the programme, adding that health officers are fully on ground to ensure success.