MSH Country Representative Interviewed on Kenya's Citizen TV

Photo Credit: Mark Tuschman

MSH’s country representative for Kenya Spencer Ochieng spoke to Citizen TV yesterday about the successes and challenges Kenya faces in its effort to improve maternal health. 

Maternal and newborn health in Kenya has drastically improved since 2013, when the government instituted a new policy of free maternal services at public hospitals. Since 2013, the number of deaths during childbirth each year has been reduced by one-third, and the number of women who deliver under the watch of a skilled health worker has nearly doubled, according to Citizen TV.

However, Spencer noted, this sharp increase in the use of public health facilities poses new challenges.

“With the adoption of the policy, you find many places have had an increase of 100 percent of pregnant mothers seeking help and delivering in those facilities,” he said. “That then results in an increase in need for supplies and all manner of services.”

This increased demand has stretched public health facilities thin. Spencer comments on what needs to be done to continue to improve maternal health throughout Kenya. 

“A declaration of free maternal services is not an end itself, it’s really the beginning,” he said.

Watch the full video from Kenya CitizenTV