Taking care of business

Reposted from Devex.com. Original article by Priya Agrawal and Gina Lagomarsino

One day in September, in a small town north of Kampala in Uganda, a young woman, pregnant with twins and still weeks away from full term, arrived at the Maria Maternity Ward, a private clinic. Her cervix was already 8 centimeters dilated. The babies were coming.

Midwife Mary Gorret Musoke knew what to do. She monitored her patient’s blood pressure and prepared her for the premature delivery. She called a doctor she knew, who gave her some advice on how to give the imminent newborns and their underdeveloped lungs a fighting chance.

“The babies came,” Musoke recalls with a smile, “and I did the kangaroo wrap — one with the mother, one with the father.”

Today, all are healthy and thriving.

The case could have gone very differently. The mother could have attempted to deliver at home, a risky proposition that remains far too common in this part of the world. She could have set out for the public district hospital in the city much farther away, a facility Musoke, who used to work there, says is so overcrowded and understaffed at times that many women end up delivering alone on the floor. Instead, she chose “Mama Maria.”

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Photo: ©PACE - Midwife Mary Gorret Musoke assisting one of her patients during an ultrasound scan at her private clinic, located in the Wakiso district, north of Kampala, Uganda.