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PIA Press Release

Mother and Child Pavilion to rise in Maguindanao

Cotabato City (6 February) -- To fast track government's campaign against maternal and infant mortality, officials in the autonomous region push for the construction of a Mother and Child Pavilion in the town of Shariff Aguak, Maguindanao.

Construction of the facility will be undertaken by the ARMM Social Fund Project (ASFP) through funding assistance from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

The pavilion is one of the several projects being implemented by the ASFP in the autonomous region for 2009 to 2010.

During the ground breaking ceremonies yesterday, ASFP Manager Atty. Mustapha Sambolawan said, after three years of rigorously complying with the requirements, several infrastructure projects will be implemented one of which is the pavilion.

"We fast track implementation, we work hard with the JBIC now JICA and in about two years we finally succeeded in getting the funding from the loan proceeds fro the JBIC about four years ago," Atty. Sambolawan said.

Meanwhile, Secretary Tahir Sulaik of the Department of Health in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao cites the importance of the Mother and Child Pavilion in their efforts to reduce the high incidence of mother and infant mortality in the autonomous region.

Sulaik acknowledges that ARMM has the highest maternal and infant mortality rate throughout the country.

"Mind you, we contribute 265 deaths per 100, 000 live births is the highest in the country. This may not even include those which are not recorded with the local civil registry, it could be even more," Dr. Sulaik said.

About 100,000 women of reproductive age in ARMM suffer from post-partum hemorrhage because they still prefer to give birth at home through unlicensed medical practitioner, he said.

With the realization of the modern and fully equipped pavilion, Sulaik said, maternal and infant mortality rate would significantly be trimmed down. (PBC/PIA Cot City) [top]

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