Ultra – sound screening is the use of high frequency waves to make an image and in pregnancy it gives an image of the baby while in the womb.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) statistics show that a child’s risk of dying is highest in the neonatal period, the first 28 days of life.
In a pregnant woman it’s always best to do the initial ultra-sound eight to 12 weeks into pregnancy so as to detect any abnormalities in the foetus and seek the necessary medical attention.
The accuracy of the test however is dependant on the expertise of the medical practitioner and thus it is key that they get the best training to be able to give accurate results.
On Wednesday Royal Phillips in partnership with Gertrude’s Foundation unveiled a free maternity ultra- sound screening camp in the Githogoro slum, neighbouring Nairobi’s affluent Runda Estate.
“The ultra- sound initiative is aimed at detecting early abnormalities in women. Also women who have complications can visit the gynaecologist to have their cases examined and treatment administered,” General Manager Phillips Healthcare Africa Peter van de Ven said.
Gertrude’s Foundation manager Carol Murithi said “this clinic was founded after community leaders approached us due to the high mortality rates. Many women also gave birth in unsanitary conditions because they had miscalculated their due dates and not booked themselves into a hospital in advance.”
“We have trained some physicians and medical students on how to use the machines and the importance of the procedure and we hope that the skills they have acquired will be used to help women and salvage the lives of the unborn babies,” said Ulrich Klous, the Business Development Manager for the Ultra – sound initiative.
The organisers asked the women to pass the message to other pregnant mothers after noticing a low turn out. Some of those with complications were scheduled for a gynaecological check later on.
Women were given a picture of their ultra-sound to take home.