Guinea has been freed from Ebola since June. However pregnant ladies are nonetheless afraid of the virus, avoiding hospital and giving delivery alone, writes the BBC’s Tamasin Ford.
Mamanata Soumah advised me she did not as soon as see a midwife, a nurse or a physician throughout her complete being pregnant and whilst she entered the third day of excruciating contractions with none ache aid, she refused to see anybody.
I requested her why.
“I used to be terrified of Ebola,” she stated.
This was again in March. 5 months after this space had been declared Ebola free.
“I did not have the braveness to go for verify-ups on the clinic as a result of so many individuals died there,” she stated.
Ms Soumah advised me she felt the child shifting in her tummy proper as much as the top.
“The child simply obtained too drained,” she stated with a clean look in her eyes.
“It was born lifeless.”
She shouldn’t be the one pregnant lady who was too scared to go to hospital.
Greater than half a dozen ladies, cradling tiny infants of their laps, patiently waited outdoors the village chief’s hut in Kalemodiagbe village to talk to me.
Everybody had a narrative to inform.
One was Ms Soumah’s sister-in-regulation. M’mah Camara nonetheless refuses to take her child to hospital to get vaccinated.
Like Ms Soumah, she additionally spent three days at house in labour, refusing to go to a physician or a midwife.
In contrast to Ms Soumah, her child survived.
She gently tightened a inexperienced towel round her two-month-previous child.
The 27-yr-previous misplaced thirteen members of her household to Ebola, together with her husband.
After he died, following native traditions, she married his brother; the daddy of her child.
“Throughout Ebola individuals left to go to the clinic however they by no means got here again. I am scared to go now in case I do not come again,” she stated.
It is the identical story for the opposite new moms and pregnant ladies within the village.
Even after Ms Soumah’s horrifying expertise, the worry of Ebola appears to outweigh the worry of anything.
Fatoumata Camara is seven months pregnant however has no intention of utilizing the healthcare system.
“Since my good friend misplaced her child, I am frightened of the delivery however I haven’t got the braveness to go to the clinic,” she advised me.
Her personal mum, brother and mom-in-regulation all died of Ebola.
“I am now scared to go to the hospital although my husband needs me to go,” she stated.
Everybody, they are saying, who left the village in the course of the time of Ebola to go to a hospital, a clinic or a well being publish, by no means returned.
On this village alone forty three individuals died of Ebola.
Kalemodiagbe is an effective two-hour drive from the capital Conakry, and about 5km (three miles) from the closest well being publish, down a bumpy, dusty monitor.
Some 15km away on the district’s primary hospital within the city of Forecariah, there was an eerie silence within the courtyard.
Through the Ebola epidemic, there was hardly area to maneuver; triage tents occupied each area.
Wards have been full.
However once I visited there have been no queues within the ready lounge.
Dr Mamamdou Cisse, the director of Forecariah hospital, put it right down to worry and suspicion.
“The belief between the well being system and the inhabitants hasn’t been utterly restored,” he informed me.
“And due to that lack of belief pregnant ladies are staying at house.
“They do not even come for his or her ante-natal appointments.”
He informed me that the hospital was operating at round 30 to 50% of its regular capability as a result of individuals are simply too scared to return.
Earlier than Ebola, they might carry out a mean of 38 caesareans a month, now it is right down to a mean of 18.
The day I visited there have been simply 18 sufferers.
“Usually it is greater than 50,” he stated.
Dr Cisse stated his largest fear was that if these expectant moms will not be coming to the hospital, then they could be dying at house.
Earlier than the Ebola epidemic, it was already a battle getting pregnant ladies to go to a clinic or take their infants for vaccinations; most as an alternative selected to see a standard healer.
Guinea is already within the worst 20 nations on the earth to be a mom, in line with the charity Save the Youngsters.
One in 10 youngsters dies underneath the age of 5.
Ladies have a one in 30 probability of dying throughout childbirth.
However this was a battle well being professionals say they have been profitable, till Ebola got here and other people misplaced their belief in mainstream well being care.
In addition to mums dying of their houses, docs have seen polio and measles outbreaks as a result of individuals do not get their youngsters vaccinated, Unicef well being specialist Dr Ibrahim Cisse advised me.
Although Guinea has been declared freed from Ebola transmission, its aftermath will final for years to return, not least by Ms Soumah.
Again within the village of Kalemodiagbe, Ms Soumah appeared round on the different new mums feeding their infants.
Her child would have been across the similar age now.
I requested the grieving mom probably the most painful query; what do you assume would have occurred in the event you had seen a physician?
“Through the being pregnant the infant moved tons so I feel if I had have gone to hospital for the start it might have survived.”
Is Sierra Leone ready for the next epidemic?
How we lost control of the Ebola virus in 2014
Is this the tree where Ebola started?
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Sign me up for the newsletter!
The content is the property of the Roznama Urdu and without permission of the publisher will be considered copyright infringement..