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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2643

UNICEF Donates 18 Vehicles: Continues Support For Child And Maternal Health Activities of the Ministry of Health

Colombo, 01 October, (Asiantribune.com): The UN Children’s Fund yesterday donated 18 vehicles worth more than Rs27 million to the Ministry of Health as part of UNICEF’s continued support to Government efforts to improve maternal and child health.

The vehicles will be used to transport vaccines to some of the country’s most vulnerable children, and will help in monitoring and referring critically ill women and children in relevant areas.

"Sri Lanka has made sound progress in reducing maternal mortality and safeguarding the health of its children," said UNICEF’s Head of Health & Nutrition Section, Dr Moazzem Hossain. "These vehicles will assist the Ministry to ensure all children continue to receive routine vaccines, and that pregnant women are provided the expert care they require."

With funds from the Governments of Norway and The Netherlands, the 18 double cab vehicles are part of wider Government and UNICEF efforts to improve child survival and reduce mortality in Sri Lanka. To be used by the Medical Officer of Health, the vehicles will also strengthen health service management at the division level including supervision and support to grassroots health workers, in particular public health midwives.

The vehicles will be sent to: Badulla, Moneragala, Hambantota, Ampara, Trincomalee, Batticaloa, Mannar, Nuwara-Eliya and Galle.

Sri Lanka has a maternal mortality rate of 44 deaths per 100,000 live births, well below the regional average of 500. Immunisation is almost universal. The 18 vehicles donated by UNICEF are part of a wider country programme to support Government meet its Millennium Development Goal targets in health. They follow the donation of nine ambulances made by UNICEF earlier this year (also through funds from Norway and The Netherlands), and 17 vehicles in 2007 with support from the Government of Japan.

- Asian Tribune -

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