Health authorities at Mzuzu Health Centre have bemoaned the 9.4 percent prevalence of cases of women delivering at home or in transit to the clinic.
The health facility’s spokesperson George Nundwe said in an interview yesterday that last year the clinic received 293 cases of women who either delivered at home or in transit to the clinic.
He said the hospital expects 3 126 deliveries in a year.
Said Nundwe: “Our assumption is that there are similar cases reported to private clinics and Mzuzu Central Hospital. So, figures should be higher than those we have.”
He said the figure is worrying considering government’s policy of ensuring that all deliveries take place at a hospital.
Nundwe said: “We are not supposed to have in transit or home deliveries. Not even births assisted by traditional birth attendants [TBAs]. All deliveries are supposed to take place at a hospital.”
The health centre’s concern, however, comes at a time when the 2010 Demographic and Health Survey shows that the percentage of women delivering in clinics has increased from 57.2 percent in 2004 to 73 percent in 2010.
Nundwe said the major factor contributing to the prevalence of the cases in the city is procrastination among pregnant women to go to maternity waiting homes.