The Neonatal Mortality Rate in Pakistan is 55/1000 livebirths whereas it is 63/1000 livebirths in Punjab. The three main causes of infant mortality are asphyxia, infections, and complications due to prematurity and low birth weight. Kangaroo Mothercare is a cost-effective intervention for saving the lives of low birth weight premature babies comprising of prolonged skin to skin contact, early initiation of breastfeeding, early discharge from hospital and regular follow ups. This is especially important for developing nations with limited resources and is an alternate to incubators. Moreover research has proven that it has better outcomes than incubators.
This initiative has been launched in Punjab by Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department with the support of UNICEF and doctors and nurses from Services Hospital were sent to Vietnam for KMC training with the support of UNICEF. Kangaroo Mothercare was initiated in Services Hospital in 2016 and till date around 300 premature babies have received kangaroo mothercare. Punjab is the first province in Pakistan to start this intervention and the Government of Punjab has shown commitment to scale up this intervention and introduce it in all tertiary care hospitals in Lahore and DHQ and THQ Hospitals in all 36 districts of Punjab
Policy and Strategic Planning Unit, Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department with the support of UNICEF and through master trainers in Services Hospital has conducted trainings of gynecologists, pediatricians and nurses from tertiary hospital of Lahore (Services Hospital, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Jinnah Hospital, Lady Aitchison hospital, Shahdara Hospital, Children Hospital, etc and master trainers from Layyah, Bahawalnagar and Faisalabad in Services Hospital. As a next step trickle down trainings are underway in Layyah and Bahawalnagar. In total there will be 5 trainings in Layyah and 5 in Bahawalnagar.
In order to develop KMC Guidelines and conduct KMC assessment in Services hospital, hiring of consultants is underway.