BAJURA, Dec 7: Pansara Rokaya, 31, of Budhinanda Municipality in Bajura on December 5 gave birth to a child on the way to a health post.
A resident of Kuru in Budhinanda-4, Rokaya decided to seek medical assistance upon realizing she was in labor. However, before she could reach the local health facility, she gave birth on the road. This is the third time that Rokaya gave birth on the road.
Fortunately, health worker Dharma Chadara met the expectant woman in the midst of labor pains and assisted her in the delivery. Chadara, the chief of the basic health center, Kuru, said the new mother suffered postpartum bleeding and was subsequently taken to the health facility.
She was going to the health post unaccompanied.
Rokaya is not alone in Bajura, compelled to give birth in the open. Ujjali Sunar, 32, of Kanda had a similar experience a few months ago when she delivered her daughter outdoors.
Bhagya Chadara, 21, of Majhpali of Gaumul Rural Municipality-3, Nani Rokaya of Bandhu of Himali Rural Municipality-1, Parbati Budha, 23, of Natikhola of Himali-2 and Kartika BK, 35, of Muktikot of Swami Kartik Khapar Rural Municipality-1 are those who have delivered babies in the open while on their way to a health facility, according to Bimala Pandey of Rugin Health Post.
In remote areas of Bajura, incidences of home births and open births are frequent.
The district reports the deaths of 12 expectant and new mothers over the past four years. The lack of regular check-ups during pregnancy, inability to reach the healthcare facilities on time are major contributors to the maternity rate in Bajura, said Badimalika Municipality’s health section Chief Tek Bahadur Khadka.
Expectant and new mothers in the remote areas often face challenges such as inadequate nutrition, insufficient rest and strenuous work, leading to fatal outcomes for some.
Despite efforts to address these issues, including the implementation of an air rescue program aimed at assisting expectant and new mothers during complications, maternal mortality rates remain high in the district.
While there is no official data on open-air births in Sudurpaschim Province's Bajura district, Khadka estimates that, on an average, one or two such incidents occur each month. The overall reproductive health situation for mothers in Bajura continues to be a cause for concern.