Epworth Maternity Team Members Help Save Lives in Developing Nations
Mothers who give birth at Epworth Freemasons Maternity know what a comfort it is to have experienced midwives and state-of-the art equipment behind them on one of the biggest days of their lives.
Unfortunately, mothers in developing countries often welcome their children into the world without basic sanitised supplies – putting their lives, and the lives of their babies, at risk.
With that in mind, post-natal physiotherapists from Fitwise Physiotherapy recently joined forces with Epworth Freemasons midwives to raise enough money to purchase 600 birthing kits from Birthing Kit Foundation Australia.
Epworth Freemasons Maternity manager, Jennifer Francis, said that while each pack is only about the size of a small envelope, it carries a combination of potentially life-saving equipment.
‘Each pack includes gauze, gloves, a plastic sheet, soap, a sterile blade and cord ties. This allows more women in developing countries to have access to a cleaner and ultimately safer environment.
‘We know that about three million newborns die each year from preventable causes in pregnancy and childbirth and unfortunately, the majority of these happen in developing countries.
‘As midwives who are surrounded by the happiness of new life, in a renowned maternity hospital, we feel humbled to be able to help in such a practical way,’ Ms Francis said.
Ante-natal physiotherapy specialist, Kath Callinan-Moore, said that once the supplies were delivered there was no shortage of volunteers for this week’s ‘Packing Party’.
‘We had so many volunteers that we actually ran out of table space. We had volunteers using any flat surface they could in the Fitwise classroom, to assemble the 600 packs,’ she said.
‘There was a real buzz in the room, knowing that spending a few hours together with a great bunch of like-minded people, would result in a life-saving gift to mothers and babies around the world,’ Ms Callinan-Moore said.
We sat down with Maya, Director of Strategy and Operations, Karla, a Mental Health Social Worker and Rosie, a Clinical Nurse Educator from Epworth Clinic to talk about what it’s like in a day of an in-patient.
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