Sasha Hernandez, MD
Sasha Hernandez, MD
Resident Physician · New York, NY

Improving Maternal Care in Rural Kenya

April 16th
Eldoret, Kenya

Project Description

Saving Mothers has a longstanding partnership with the Kapenguria County Referral Hospital in West Pokot, Kenya. There is an ongoing project called the Maternal Continuum of Care Program which seeks to promote prenatal care and hospital deliveries in the area and improve maternal mortality and birth complications. A hallmark of this program is training local providers in ultrasound, clinical protocols, and surgical procedures, as well as periodic in person trips to provide more in-depth surgical interventions and training. So far, this work has resulted in a 25% decrease in neonatal mortality in the area, and we anticipate that the continuation of the program will benefit even more infants and mothers in years to come.

Population Served

This project serves women and infants in West Pokot, Kenya. This population has a low rate of healthcare usage both due to barriers in accessing care and scarcity of care available. There is a high rate of home birth that often results in poor outcomes for both mother and child and by supporting the existing healthcare resources, and continuing our work with the Maternal Continuum of Care Program, we can make a meaningful impact in the lives and health of these patients.

Expected Impact

This project is ongoing and has already seen improvement in the prenatal care utilization, increase in hospital deliveries and decreases in neonatal mortality. This trip specifically will focus on educating local healthcare workers on safety protocols, providing clinical training and simulation, and providing pro bono surgical interventions to patients with complications of childbirth. As a global health practitioner, I am uniquely positioned to use apply programmatic findings and innovations from this work in West Pokot, Kenya to other ongoing work in Ghana and Latin America.

Trip Photos & Recap

Getting to spend time with the traditional birth attendants of our program during their home visits was the highlight of the trip! Human connection despite language and culture differences is a beautiful thing!