Hon VP

Vice President of Sierra Leone, Dr. Mohamed Juldeh Jalloh, has highlighted improvement in the country’s surgical volume rates when he addressed the Conference of the West African College of Surgeons, a four-day gathering of over 500 experts, some of whom will perform free surgeries and train local health workers from across the country.

The small West African nation, whose health statistics have improved in recent years according to the World Health Organisation, is hosting this year’s 64th Annual General Meeting and Scientific Conference from 3-7 March 2024.

“On behalf of His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio, I am delighted to give the keynote address at this opening ceremony. Sierra Leone is the host country for the sixth time and as a country, we are proud of the progress we have made so far to expand access to surgery.

“Since 2012, surgical volume rates have increased in Sierra Leone with statistics of 400-506 procedures per 100,000 people. Obstetric surgeries have increased by 160% nationwide. There has also been an increase in the number of surgeons at public facilities. 61% of all procedures and 85% of C-sections are now being performed in the public sector.

“This is part of our broader effort to reduce the maternal mortality rate by 38%. We shall continue to invest in surgery in Sierra Leone, and we are committed to our partnership with the West African College of Surgeons. Together let us continue to strive for excellence and uphold the highest standard of professionalism and ethics to leave a lasting legacy in West Africa,” Dr Juldeh Jalloh told the event in Freetown.

According to the WHO Annual Report for 2022, Sierra Leone recorded remarkable achievements in main areas advancing Universal Health Coverage, protecting people from health emergencies, and promoting healthier populations.

“Significant reduction in maternal mortality ratio has been recorded as a result of Government initiatives and strategies supported by WHO, including a suitable policy environment, availability of guidelines and tools, access to EmONC services, institutionalizing of the MPDSR system, the establishment of the Quality Management Programme among others.

“The 2000-2020 UN estimates published in 2022, showed the reduction of Maternal Mortality Ratio from 1682 in 2000 to 443 in 2020. Similar figures have been reported in the annual Maternal Death Surveillance Reports.

“Moving forward into the coming year, WHO will continue to support the Ministry of Health…to build on progress made in health systems strengthening, strategic health advocacy and policy dialogue, partnership and coordination, quality health service delivery, and improved capacity in public health emergency management.

Sierra Leone has made significant progress in reducing the maternal mortality rate from 717 per 100,000 to 443 per 100,000, according to the Ministry of Health, the institution leading the government’s efforts to reduce those figures to under 300 per 100, 000 by 2025 and to under 70 per 100, 000 by 2030.

Copyright –Published in Expo Times News on Monday, March 11th, 2024 (ExpoTimes News – Expo Media Group (expomediasl.com)