Only exclusive breastfeeding can reduce neonatal mortality

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Olukemi Tongo, a Consultant Neonatologist at University College Hospital, UCH, Ibadan, has stressed the need for early and exclusive breastfeeding to reduce neonatal mortality in the country.

Ms. Tongo, a member of the Nigerian Society of Neonatal Medicine, NISOMN, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan on Sunday.

According to her, most neonatal deaths are due to preventable causes.

She explained that “the most common causes of neonatal deaths are related to prematurity, failure to breath or cry at birth and infections.

“All these conditions can be prevented through education of mothers and frontline health workers.

“We can reduce the rate of neonatal deaths in our country even without high technology, provided there is basic level of healthcare and education.”

She announced that NISOMN would hold community awareness rally on newborn care and prevention of newborn infections on July 4 in Ibadan to address the issue of poor education and awareness.

She added that “NISOMN, which is a group of doctors involved in care of newborn babies, seeks to bring this information to the fore by sensitising mothers and empowering frontline healthcare workers.

“The rally is to educate mothers and health workers on how to take care of newborn.”

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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