Mortality rate of children aged below five years down to 141 per 1000.
The Minister of Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, has said that the maternal mortality rate in Nigeria dropped from 704 per 100,000 live births in 1990 to 487 per 100,000 live births in 2011.
The minister spoke in Sokoto on Friday during the inauguration of Kwannawa Primary Health Centre to symbolise the inauguration of 230 such projects executed by Sokoto State Government.
Mr. Chukwu said there was also a decline in the mortality rate of children aged below five years to 141 per 1000 in 2011.
He added that the progress toward improving maternal and child health in realisation of Millennium Development Goals, MDGs, 4 and 5 could not be sustained without giving primary healthcare the attention it deserved.
“Although we have made remarkable progress towards improving our maternal and child health indices, more still needs to be done to ensure the achievement of the MDGs by 2015,” Mr. Chukwu said.
The minister said that routine immunisation, attendance at birth and ante-natal care were major interventions necessary for improving maternal and child survival.
He said that the healthcare centres would bring healthcare closer to the people.
The minister used the occasion to launch the use of 56,823 doses of Chlorhexidine gluconate and 56,832 doses of Misoprostol for infant and maternal care.
Chlorhexidine protects newborns from cord-related infections while Misoprostol prevents postpartum haemorrhage after birth.
In his address, Sokoto Governor, Aliyu Wamakko, said that the centres had been fully equipped, staffed and provided drugs to function effectively, adding that each would be provided with an ambulance.
He said community-based committees were set up to run the affairs of the 230 health centres.
“We will continue to do our best to further improve the lives of the people in the areas of the provision of quality healthcare, delivery services , good roads and potable water , among others,” he said.
The Commissioner for Local Governments, Faruk Malami, said that the centres would help in the provision of affordable and quality healthcare in rural areas.
Mr. Malami said that the centres were each provided with a 1KVA generator and that there was a plan to provide a two-bedroom flat in each.