Photo caption: Health officials at the launch of the Ministry of Health and Gender Affairs Maternity Guide booklet on June 24, 2022, (L-R): Nurse Donna Hill in charge of the Brown Hill Health Centre; Ms Shelisa Martin-Clarke, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health; Nurse Heather David in charge of the Butlers Health Centre; Hon. Hazel Brandy-Williams, Junior Minister of Health; Nurse Chandreka Persaud-Wallace, Matron at the Alexandra Hospital; Nurse Dhaima Golding, Assistant Matron; Dr. William Stones, Obstetrician-Gynaecologist; Kenisha Sargeant, Community Health Worker at the Charlestown Health Centre; and Nurse Deslyn Tyson-Whyte, Acting Coordinator of Community Nursing Services in the Ministry of Health
NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS (June 27, 2022) — Expectant mothers and new mothers on Nevis will be able to benefit from a maternity guide, the first of its kind, which was launched on Friday, June 24, 2022.
The booklet was produced by the Ministry of Health and Gender Affairs, through its Community Health Nursing Services and the Alexandra Hospital’s Maternity Ward. It is designed to assist in the maternity process by providing antenatal and perinatal guidelines that should be adopted by mothers. Ms Dhaima Golding, Assistant Matron at the hospital spoke on the rationale for producing the publication and its relevance.
“When we created the maternity guide book, we had a goal in mind and that is to promote and maintain the physical, mental and social health of mother and baby and to better manage complications in pregnancy. The importance of good antenatal care cannot be overemphasised.
“This book entails a variety of information which will be very beneficial to mother and baby. In the book from chapter 9 from chapter 10 to chapter 16 it will give you information on booking, signs of labour, breastfeeding, postpartum depression, the first days with your baby, and discharge plan, and Chapter 16 will give you the care and safety of baby and safety at home. This book has all complete and up-to-date information…
The Assistant Matron also outlined the various ways the booklet can be accessed.
“It’s available at all primary care services such as the various health centres. It also will be available at the OBGYN offices and it will available at Alexandra Hospital’s Maternity Ward. All expectant mothers will be given a copy of this book and it’s free of charge at their first antenatal visit. All in all, this book brings together everything a new mom needs to know about pregnancy and the care of her newborn,” she said.
Declaring the launch of the maternity guide, Hon. Hazel Brandy-Williams, Junior Minister of Health and Gender Affairs congratulated all those who were involved in making the publication a success.
“I believe that pregnancy was never designed as a path for anyone to take on alone, and so I am extremely proud today of this undertaking. The Ministry of Health and Gender Affairs through its health centres and the Maternity Ward is offering a hand. They’re offering a companion. They’re offering some guidance to women who are on their pregnancy path.
“The vision and rationale behind providing a maternity guide must be applauded. Put your hands together for the team who conceptualised this idea and who saw it to fruition. I want to, from this rostrum, congratulate you highly for a job well done,” she said.
The minister described the occasion as a proud moment for the Ministry of Health and its ability to serve its clients even when they are far away from the health services. She also underscored the work of the community nurses.
“It is something you can walk with, and what I like with it as well, it is a small package. It can hold in your handbag, so you can have it anywhere, any place at any time you can refer to this publication…
“I am sure the expectant mothers who were a little apprehensive should now feel easy. They can rest easy that there is some guidance that they can have and they can refer to from time to time and so, I stand committed to the work that you have been doing in your community, community nurses, I stand committed and I applaud you as well for the work that you have been doing, and in that regard, I want to say that I fully endorse the production of this document,” she said.
During the launch, copies of the booklet were also presented to antenatal clients of the Brown Hill, Gingerland and Charlestown health centres.
The publication, which will also be available in Spanish, can also be available online on the Nevis Island Administration’s website, niagov.kn