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Advancing maternal and newborn health outcomes in Zambia through health systems strengthening

In order to sustainably roll back maternal and neonatal mortality, it is critical that health facilities are adequately equipped with all essential live saving equipment. However, this is not the reality in many health facilities in Zambia especially those in under-served communities. While the government of Zambia has made notable strides, there is need for continued priority investment in maternal and newborn health across the continuum of care.

In order to address the existing gaps, UNFPA Zambia with funding support from the United Kingdom Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) procured and handed over assorted Emergency, Obstetric and Newborn Care (EmONC) equipment to support the Government of Zambia in her efforts to advance maternal and newborn health outcomes in Western and Central Provinces.

The equipment which includes, Caesarean section  sets, Normal Delivery Sets, Cervical Sets, Oxygen Concentrators Ultrasound scanners and other various  theatre equipment is a great milestone towards fulfilling Zambia’s commitments to the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Programme of Action, as well as achieving national aspirations as espoused in the National Health Strategic Plan 2017-2021; the 7th National Development Plan and Zambia’s Vision 2030.

“As we continue to implement health programmes, our role is to ensure that we focus on strengthening health systems including human resource for health, health care financing, infrastructure, equipment and transport as well as availability of essential medicines and other medical supplies. Therefore, this equipment is a smart investment that will go a long way in ensuring that as a country we roll back maternal mortality, neonatal mortality and ensure the overall well being of mothers, children and adolescents country wide.” - Dr Kennedy Malama, Permanent Secretary - Ministry of Health

UNFPA remains committed to advocating for increased support from both international and local partners as well as private sector investment in EmONC services, which are a critical component in a comprehensive and sustainable approach to universal health coverage.