On Thursday 1st April 2021 at around 10pm, heavily pregnant 35-year-old Moureen Mutonyi started experiencing contractions that would later lead to the birth of her 8th child, she thought that the birth would be as easy as the first seven.
“I have been giving birth to my children from either home or in the hospital. But the process has always been fast yet with no complications. But with the trainings from the community health workers, I had decided to be giving birth from hospital” the mother of eight explains.
But unfortunately, she experienced the contractions for the most recent baby late in the night and yet the distance from her home to the nearest health facility was long, “I decided to have the child from home with the help of a trained traditional birth attendant.”
However, when the baby came out, trouble set-in. “The placenta refused to come out (retained placenta) and I was bleeding a lot.” The adults present sent for one of the Operational Leave Healthy Worker, Mr Moses Wamukote to come to Mutonyi’s rescue.
Mr Wamukote was initially a Village Health Worker, who was trained by Share An Opportunity Uganda (SAO U) through the Primary Health Care (PHC) Program in Mbale to become a Community Health Promoter and later an Operational Level Healthy Worker.
As an Operational health Worker, Mr Wamukote identifies health related cases within his community, coordinates with the nearest health units to ensure that those that need medical attention receive it immediately and also links patients to the motorcycle ambulance for easy transfer to health facilities.
In Moureen’s case, when Wamukote reached her home, the mother of eight had already fainted. “Due to the bleeding, by the time we arrived, Mutonyi had fainted but fortunately, I had come with the ambulance driver, I called the maternity wing of Busiu Health centre IV to inform them of an emergency case that was being brought in by the ambulance driver.”
At the facility, Mutonyi got help and is now back home with her family.