GSS Begins Census On Maternal Health

The Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) has in collaboration with some key stakeholders in the health sector commenced a special survey into maternal health issues across Ghana.

Dubbed ‘The 2017 Ghana Maternal Health Survey (MHS)’, the study is a partnership between GSS, USAID, the European Union (EU), ICF International and the Ghana Health Service (GHS).

Speaking at the launch of the survey on Thursday in Winneba, Acting Government Statistician, Baah Wadieh, explained that the 2017 MHS in Ghana is the second in series after successfully conducting the first phase in 2007.

He indicated that the 2017 survey would collect information from a nationally-representative sample of households and women of the reproductive age group of 15-49 years.

According to him, the objectives of the 2017 MHS include, among others, “to collect at the national level which allow for an assessment of the level of maternal mortality in Ghana taking into consideration urban and rural differentials in three zones – Coastal namely Western, Central, Greater Accra and Volta regions; Middle (Eastern, Ashanti and Brong-Ahafo regions, and Northern – Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions.”

“It also seeks to identify causes of maternal and non-maternal deaths and specifically deaths due to abortion-related causes among adult women,” he said, adding that “the survey shall as well help the partners collect data on women’s perceptions and experience with antenatal maternity, and emergency obstetrical care, especially the termination or abortion of a pregnancy.”

According Mr Wadieh, the survey has two phases with phase one consisting of visiting about 900 selected areas gathering information on household in various female household members between 12-54 years that occurred in the last five years across 10 regions for about 75 days and the second phase which is the main data collection phase starting from June 15, 2017 to Thursday, October 12, 2017.

The MHS, DAILY GUIDE gathered, is expected to be completed at the end of October 2017, and findings to be released in September 2018.

According to Mr Wadieh, Ghana has over the last few decades invested in improving maternal and neonatal health.

He appealed to the media, metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies to join hands in support of the GMHS.

 BY Edward Emmanuel Lamptey