THE PROBLEM AND ITS SETTING
Life is a gift and it’s precious. The smile of a child brings hope and aspiration for a better future. Nothing is more important than to guarantee every newborn a healthy life. Every action that leads to the upgrade of health services could be another life saved.
As the population continues to rise, newborn mortality rate may also increase. Modern Medical Guide states that there is an estimate of more than 100 million babies born worldwide every year (Shyrock, 2000). More than half are born in Asia, and about one-eight in the United States. In the Philippines, statistics shows that per 1,000 population, 26 babies are born annually (www.nationmaster.com).
It is a constant challenge for the medical professionals to reduce child mortality not only because it is advocated by the United Nations in their Millennium Development Goal number four. Several guidelines in providing the care of the newborns have been set and are continuously updated in an attempt to trim down child morbidity and mortality rates.
The Philippines is one of the 42 countries that account for 90% of global under-five mortality, with an estimated of 82,000 Filipino children die annually. And the majority of which occur during neonatal period (CHERG estimates of under-five deaths, 2000-03). Majority of neonatal deaths are due to stressful events or conditions during labor, delivery and the immediate postpartum period, and about fifty-percent occur in the first two days of life (Galutira, 2008).
With an increasing number of population, the Philippine government is prompted to promote maternal and child health. Maternal and Child health refers to a philosophy of care based upon the consideration of mother and child in relation to each other; and in consideration of the whole family with its meaningful relationships as well as socio-economic environment as framework of the patient (Ocfemia, 2008).
In September of 2000, the Philippines, together with 190 other United Nation member states, joined in signing the UN Millenium declaration to commit into achieving the 8 Millennium Development Goals (MDG) by the year 2015. The MDG was made to reduce poverty and hunger, tackle ill-health, gender inequality, lack of education, lack of access to clean water and environmental degradation. The MDG 4, in particular, aims to reduce under-five childhood mortality by two-thirds by the 2015. Almost 90% of all children deaths have been attributed to 6 conditions namely, neonatal causes, pneumonia, diarrhea, malaria, measles, andHIV/AIDS (http://www.who.int/topics/millennium_development_goals/en/)
Tabaco City is exceptionally a staunch advocate in achieving The 8 Millennium Development Goals. In fact, under the helm of Honorable Mayor Krisel Lagman Luistro, the City has instigated the program called Tingog 2015 which aims to bring down the responsibility of achieving the MDG’s from national to local level in order to fully maximize all available avenues to achieve these goals. Goal number four and five in particular are given precedence by this program (www.tabacocity.com). To be able to achieve the MDG 4, the DOH implemented the Essential Newborn Care Protocol (ENC) in our country to rapidly reduce the number of newborn deaths. This was issued on December 7, 2009 under Administrative Order 2009-0025. The ENC Protocol is a simple, concise and straightforward guideline that is backed by solid research evidence for health workers and medical practitioners to improve neonatal as well as maternal care. Its implementation has the potential to avert approximately 70% of newborn deaths due to preventable causes. These time-bound interventions are: Immediate drying, uninterrupted skin-to-skin contact, proper and timely cord clamping and cutting, non-separation of the...