By Kabuye Ronald

The newly launched demographic and health survey 2016 by Uganda Bureau of Statistics indicate a reduction in maternal and child infant mortality rates.

According to the key indicators released today at golf course hotel in kampala infant mortality rate is now at 43 deaths per 1000 live births from 54 deaths in 2011 while maternal mortality has slightly reduced per 100,000 live births now stand at 336 as opposed to 438 in 2011.

The survey indicates that 35% of women are using modern methods of family planning from 18% in 2006; fertility has also decreased over the same time period with now women in Uganda having 5.4 children a decline from 6.7 children.

The report also indicate that stunting in children reduced from 38% in 2006 to 29% in 2016, this attributed to malnutrition where only 68% of children under 6 months are exclusively breast fed.

The survey also indicated that 60% pregnant mothers made four visits in hospital before giving birth while 73% delivered in hospital.

Teenage pregnancies stand at 25% that’s age 15 to 19 years, childhood vaccination of all immunisable diseases from one year to 12 years stand at 55%, ownership of treated mosquito nets stand at 71%, 84% of women and 83% of men knew about HIV/AIDS prevention methods while 83% women and 70% had ever tested for HIV in the past five years.

It further indicated that 8% of male and 22% female confessed that they have ever experienced sexual violence.

While launching the key indicator survey, the first deputy Prime Minister Gen. Moses Ali said it’s regrettable and unacceptable to lose mothers and children due to factors that are avoidable and some that are beyond people control.

He also questioned why health workers subject expecting mothers to caesarian which he says has contributed to the number of maternal mortality rates as opposed to normal birth process.

In the someway the health minister Jane Ruth Aceng said that the survey will help the ministry in budgeting and planning for the next five years.

She decried the low funding to the ministry and called for cooperation from other stakeholders if they are to achieve more. She however attributed the high maternal mortality rate to teenage pregnancy thus appealing to the public to also do the needful.

The report was carried out in 15 sub regions that’ south central, north central, Kampala, Busoga, Bukedi, Bugisu, Teso, Karamoja, Lango, Acholi, West Nile, Bunyoro, Tooro, Kigezi and Ankoleand a total of 20,880 households were sampled in 133 districts across the country and the final findings are expected to be released later this year.

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