SOMALIA / WOMEN REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH

Preview Language:   Original
14-Feb-2018 00:03:49
Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook was a young nurse in her twenties when she fled the mounting chaos and tensions of Mogadishu in 1989 to start a new life in the United Kingdom (UK). Now she is back to her motherland and started a maternity hospital. UNSOM

Available Language: English
Type
Language
Format
Acquire
/
English
Other Formats
Description
STORY: SOMALIA / WOMEN REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
TRT: 03:49
SOURCE: UNSOM
RESTRICTION: PLEASE CREDIT UNSOM
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 06 FEBRUARY 2018, MOGADISHU, SOMALIA

SHOTLIST:

1. Wide shot, Bybook Maternity Hospital
2. Close up, Bybook Maternity Hospital
3. Med shot, Bybook Maternity Hospital
4. Wide shot, patients wait at the reception area to be served
5. Med shot, patients wait at the reception area to be served
6. Wide shot, Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook performs diagnostic sonography on a patient
7. Med shot, Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook performs diagnostic sonography on a patient
8. Wide shot, Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook performs diagnostic sonography on a patient
9. Close up, images from diagnostic sonography
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook, Director of Bybook Maternity Hospital:
“We opted for this idea, me and my husband, because my children were grown up, and we came here quite a few times on holiday and we have seen the suffering the mothers are going through. And the babies were dying for nothing, simple procedure which is resuscitation and oxygen.”
11. Wide shot, a nurse checks the admitted patients
12. Med shot, a nurse checks the admitted patients
13. Close up, a nurse checks the admitted patients
14. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook, Director of Bybook Maternity Hospital:
“The opportunities I see today in Somalia is, first and foremost is the security and if you see all the faculties or the institutions, the educational institutions that are existing and teaching health programs are more than any other branches in educational institutions today in Mogadishu. So for that reason, what I think is the health sector is becoming the best option for anyone who is going to be educated in Somalia.”
15. Wide shot, lab technicians at work
16. Med shot, lab technicians at work
17. Close up, specimen from several patients at the hospital
18. Wide shot, a lab technician testing some samples from some of the patients
19. Close up, a lab technician testing some samples from some of the patients
20. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook, Director of Bybook Maternity Hospital:
“I would advise everyone who has got that ambition go ahead with it. Do not stop, do not become discouraged because we have been through it. Me and my husband, we have been through there, we have sacrificed so many things; we have left our children, our grandchildren just to sacrifice to have this and help the people who are in need of our services.”
21. Wide shot, the pharmacy at the hospital
22. Med shot, a patient buys medicine from the pharmacy
23. Wide shot, a pharmacist at the hospital
24. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook, Director of Bybook Maternity Hospital:
“The biggest challenge is the staff that are working in the hospitals are not appropriately trained. They are trained but not appropriately trained. And for that reason so many mistakes are happening within the health skills or the professional skills, whether they are doctors or nurses or midwives or laboratory staff, pharmacists.”
25. Med shot, a pharmacist at the hospital
26. Close up, a patient buys medicine from the pharmacy
27. Wide shot, a patient buys medicine from the pharmacy

STORYLINE:

Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook was a young nurse in her twenties when she fled the mounting chaos and tensions of Mogadishu in 1989 to start a new life in the United Kingdom (UK). Now she is back to her motherland and started a maternity hospital.

She became an experienced midwife at a North London hospital with a master’s degree from Middlesex University and raised a family.

But she never forgot Somalia. On her periodic visits to her homeland, the mother of six was appalled by the poor medical facilities available to young pregnant women and the numbers who died during childbirth.

The 59-year-old native of Kismaayo Shamsa Abdullahi Bybook recalled, “we saw the suffering the mothers were going through, the babies were also dying unnecessarily for (the lack) of a simple procedure called resuscitation and oxygen.”

In 2016, she decided to do something about it. Shamsa and her husband packed their bags and moved back to Mogadishu to found a maternity hospital offering quality reproductive services to Somali women – the Bybook Maternity Hospital.

Shamsa fully realized the risks her homecoming entailed. She was working in London as a part-time newsreader for the British Broadcasting Corporation’s Somali language service when she was sent to Kismaayo on assignment in 1997 and was briefly abducted by armed militia.

Within months of her return to Mogadishu, the maternity hospital opened its doors in the Hodan district of the Somali capital in October 2017. It offers a wide range of inpatient and outpatient services that include safe birthing, pediatric and childcare, female genital mutilation counselling, diagnostic sonography, postpartum care and infertility care.

Shamsa said “we decided to be different by focusing more on quality care. For example, we ensured that no newborn baby dies for lack of oxygen or resuscitation equipment or even incubators. This is important for the country.”

she added that she has also launched a campaign touting the benefits of giving birth in a tub of warm water to reduce maternal mortality rates.

The importance of high-quality medical facilities for Somalis cannot be overstated. According to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), mortality rates among Somali children are amongst the highest in the world. One out of every seven Somali children dies before their fifth birthday, which translates into a death rate of 137 out of every 1,000 live births. Mortality rates for mothers are also high, with UNICEF flagging that one out of every 12 women dies due to pregnancy-related causes – a death rate of 732 out of every 100,000 live births.

The 45-bed Bybook Maternity Hospital records an average of 50 safe deliveries each month and also treats newborns with breathing complications. Word of mouth has spread the reputation of the hospital far and wide, with pregnant women coming from towns as distant as Afgooye and Jowhar.

Shamsa noted “due to our positive effort, many people now know about our services.”

She said “even less educated mothers tell me they have been told that we have special equipment that help mothers and their newborn babies survive.”

However, the lack of effective regulation in Somalia’s health care sector remains a source of constant concern for Shamsa. She blames poor training and inadequate equipment for causing bodily harm and unnecessary loss of life on a regular basis.

Shamsa said “the staff who are working in the hospitals are not appropriately trained,” adding that “the problem is that nobody is controlling the quality of education and services that are offered.”

UNICEF notes that Somalia is plagued by inconsistent health care delivery structures, with medical services provided by a mix of health authorities, private entities and international and national non-governmental organizations. The former nurse urges Somalis wishing to improve the state of health care in their country to consider medicine as a career option and expand the number of hospitals that can save lives.

Shamsa said “my husband and I have left our children and our grandchildren to have this (maternity hospital) and help the people who are in need of our services,” adding that “I would advise everyone who has that ambition to go ahead with it because we have been through it. Do not stop, do not become discouraged.”
Series
Category
Topical Subjects
Geographic Subjects
Creator
UNSOM
Alternate Title
unifeed180214a
Asset ID
2092905